A Claflin University alumnus is starting a scholarship for a student on the university’s baseball team.

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Michael Dawson, '03, is giving back to the university by establishing the Michael R. Dawson Scholarship. Dawson is a district manager and regional director for Nicholas Financial Inc. in Atlanta. He is also the principal owner of Fidelis LLC, a real estate investment company, based in Atlanta.

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The scholarship will be awarded to a student on Claflin's baseball team. The total scholarship is valued at $10,000 to be awarded over a four-year period.

Dawson, who was a part of the Claflin Panther baseball team when the team made its first-ever appearance in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics tournament, credits some of his success in business to the lessons he learned on the baseball field.

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"This is important to me because I received a baseball scholarship all four years," Dawson said. "When all the bigger schools didn't give me a chance, Claflin gave me an opportunity."

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Dawson's scholarship recipient will be chosen based on an essay and a GPA requirement.

"My hope is two-fold. First, that this scholarship leaves an impression big enough on the student that they'll want to give back as well. Second, that it inspires other alumni to do the something special, big or small, for our university," he said.

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"For the recipient, I want to make sure they understand that this isn't just paving a way for them, but it's paving the way for them to give to students in the future because they'll understand what it feels like for someone to give them a chance."

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