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Palos Heights resident receives full tuition for one year

Saint Xavier University senior awarded scholarship

Chicago (July 19, 2007) – Palos Heights resident Sahr Sweiss has been awarded the William G. McGowan Scholarship, which provides full tuition for the 2007-08 academic year at Saint Xavier University.

A senior honors student this fall majoring in business, Sweiss was chosen after she submitted a 1,000-word essay last spring addressing the contributions of William G. McGowan to both the business world and the telecommunications field. In 1968, McGowan organized MCI Communications Corp., which effectively ended the telecommunications monopoly in the United States.

“We feel very privileged to award the McGowan scholarship to a Graham School student,” said Laura Earner, assistant dean of the Graham School of Management at Saint Xavier. “The generosity of this gift will allow Sahr to concentrate on her studies and study abroad. She will be given the opportunity to become a true business leader in the global marketplace.” 

Established in 1992 in Washington, D.C., the William G. McGowan Charitable Fund furthers McGowan’s vision by providing grants for healthcare and medical scientific research, as well as educational opportunities that develop the gifts and talents of youth. 

“Unequivocally, Mr. McGowan’s contributions to the field of telecommunication are immeasurable,” Sweiss wrote in her essay. “However, in a broader spectrum, Mr. McGowan also affected the business world in a way that made it more compatible to what we citizens as consumers have a right to. By dissolving the AT&T monopoly, American citizens were granted more freedom. We now can choose what telecommunication company we want to serve us. The power was restored to the hands of the consumers.”


Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1846, Saint Xavier University was the first Mercy college in the United States and is Chicago’s oldest Catholic university. Serving approximately 5,700 students at its campuses in Chicago, Orland Park and its Loop location, the University offers 35 undergraduate majors; more than 40 graduate program options in arts and sciences, business, education and nursing; and a variety of program options in continuing and professional studies. Recognizing Saint Xavier’s excellence in education, U.S. News & World Report has ranked SXU consistently among the Best Colleges in the Midwest.

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