Recent News News Archives News Categories

Garcia and Juergens named 2023 Yellow Rose Scholarship recipients

BROWNWOOD – May 4, 2023 – Howard Payne University’s Mariah Garcia of Aubrey and Cara Juergens of Deer Park were recently named Yellow Rose Scholarship recipients by the HPU Women’s Club. Both students were recognized at the annual Yellow Rose Scholarship Luncheon, alongside Brownwood’s Dr. Mitzi Lehrer, this year’s Yellow Rose Award winner.

“I’m so glad we were able to honor all three of these deserving women,” shared Melinda Hines, HPU first lady and president of the Women’s Club. “Mariah and Cara are servant leaders on and off campus and Dr. Lehrer has been so intentional to teach, care for and invest in students and so many of the HPU family for nearly 25 years. They are excellent ambassadors for the Lord and Howard Payne University, and it is our privilege to honor them in this way.”

As a result of the generosity from the Yellow Rose Scholarship Luncheon, the primary fundraiser for the scholarship endowment, a second scholarship was able to be awarded for the second year in a row.

Garcia is a junior majoring in the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy and chemistry. She enjoys participating in HPU’s Baptist Student Ministry (BSM) Lead Team, Student Government Association and Pi Theta Chi. She also serves as a youth leader at Southside Church and volunteers with The ARK Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Shelter. She is a student worker in the Office of Advancement.

Juergens is a sophomore majoring in kinesiology with all-level certification. She serves as a Resident Assistant, an intern at Coggin Avenue Baptist Church and a member of the BSM lead team and Ministerial Alliance.

Dr. Lehrer has enjoyed a lifelong career in education, teaching in elementary schools in Brownwood, Abilene, Sweetwater, Rule and Fort Stockton. In 1996, she became a faculty member in HPU’s School of Education and taught elementary education courses for the next 20 years. Following her retirement, Dr. Lehrer served at HPU as alumni relations assistant until 2022. She was married to the late Wayne Lehrer and has two children, Robert and Mary, and two grandchildren, Jake and Josh.

This year’s keynote speaker was Brandi (Maguire) Parrish ’96. Parrish shared about the impact of HPU on her life and the challenging but rewarding work of church planting. Parrish and her husband, Kelly ’97, live in Kilgore and have four children: Zachary, Noah, Joshua and AnnaFaith.

This year’s Diamond level sponsor was Texas Goldstar Real Estate. Gold level sponsors were Bangs Flower and Gift Shop; Ms. Debbie Cartwright and Mrs. Valeri Deason; Dr. Sarah Chandler and Mrs. Emily Fuller; Mr. David and Mrs. Wendy Grooms; Mr. Neal and Mrs. Sharon Guthrie; Dr. Cory and Mrs. Melinda Hines; Mr. Woody and Mrs. Miki Martin; Mr. Ben and Mrs. Bertha Mieth; and Robnett Integra Insurance Services. Blue level sponsors were Ann Jones Real Estate; Mrs. Emily Attaway and Mrs. Jane Rodgers; Mrs. Bobbette Bell; Mrs. Elisha Bird and Mrs. Jennifer Broughton; Chick-fil-A of Brownwood; Citizens National Bank; Mrs. Kaye Cummings and Mrs. Nelda Carpenter; Hendrick Medical Center, Brownwood; Mrs. Joy Ivy; Mr. Bart and Mrs. Debra Johnson; Dr. Ben and Mrs. Ashley Martin; Mrs. Leesa Stephens; TexasBank; Mr. Paul and Mrs. Lynda Waldrop; W.A.Y. Summit; Dr. Julie Welker and Mrs. Betty Broome; and Willie’s T’s and HPU Stinger Store.

Those interested in being a part of the HPU Women’s Club can visit


Cutline #1: Mariah Garcia (left) and Cara Juergens were named recipients of the HPU Women’s Club’s Yellow Rose Scholarship.

Cutline #2: Dr. Mitzi Lehrer (left) was named the 2023 Yellow Rose Award recipient. She is pictured with Melinda Hines, HPU’s first lady and president of the HPU Women’s Club.

Cutline #3: Brandi (Maguire) Parrish ’96 was the keynote speaker at the luncheon.