OTW Events Announces National and Local Stand for the Silent Scholarship Program

Leawood, Kansas – May 20, 2024 – OTW Events is proud to announce the launch of the Stand for the Silent (SFTS) Scholarship Program, designed to honor the legacy of Ty and Laura Smalley by supporting students who are committed to fighting bullying and teen suicide. This initiative underscores OTW Events’ dedication to making a meaningful impact in the Kansas City metro area and beyond, through partnerships with organizations like Stand for the Silent.

A Legacy of Advocacy and Support

In 2010, Stand for the Silent was founded by Kirk and Laura Smalley after their son, Ty Smalley, took his own life at the age of eleven. Ty had been suspended from school for retaliating against a bully, and the Smalley family was devastated by the loss. In their grief, they turned their pain into purpose, reaching out to schools to share Ty’s story and educate students, teachers, and administrators about the dangers of bullying.

Ty was a young boy who loved the outdoors, enjoyed baseball and other sports, and cherished his time with family and friends. He was a high-energy, rambunctious child who internalized more of the bullying he faced than his parents realized. The Smalleys believe Ty’s time with them was far too short, and they have worked tirelessly to spread the anti-bullying message to prevent other families from experiencing similar heartache.

The Ty Smalley Memorial Scholarship

In remembrance of their son, the Smalleys established the Ty Smalley Memorial Scholarship. This $5,000 scholarship is awarded to students who exemplify the spirit and goals of Stand for the Silent in their efforts to combat bullying and promote mental health awareness.

Honoring Laura Smalley

In November 2020, tragedy struck the Smalley family again when Laura was diagnosed with a brain aneurysm and did not survive the subsequent surgery. To honor Laura’s compassion, love for all children, and dedication to standing up for the silent, the Laura Smalley Memorial Scholarship was established. This $5,000 scholarship also recognizes students who share Laura’s commitment to making a positive impact in the fight against bullying and teen suicide.

Expanding the Scholarship Program

Starting this spring of 2024, the SFTS Scholarship Program has expanded to include two state-specific scholarships of $2,500 each, awarded exclusively to residents of Kansas and Missouri. The program now offers a total of four scholarships biannually: two Ty Smalley Memorial Scholarships and two Laura Smalley Memorial Scholarships. The next application period begins on October 1, 2024. SFTS plans to announce and offer similar scholarships in 14 additional states this year, further extending the reach and impact of their mission.

Recognizing Our Local Recipients

OTW Events is thrilled to highlight the achievements of two local scholarship recipients:

Emeri Pasley – Ty Smalley Memorial Scholarship Recipient, Fall 2023

Emeri Pasley, a Junior at Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri, is the proud recipient of the Ty Smalley Memorial Scholarship. Originally from Quincy, IL, Emeri is majoring in Criminal Justice and Psychology on a pre-law track. She is passionate about law and is particularly excited about her upcoming internship with the Innocence Project, a program dedicated to reviewing cases of wrongfully convicted individuals.

Emeri expresses profound gratitude for the support from Stand for the Silent, which allows her to pursue her dreams and make a significant difference in the lives of others.

Wesley Ferguson – Kansas State Scholarship Recipient, Spring 2024

Wesley Ferguson, a senior at Trinity Academy in Wichita, Kansas, plans to study Industrial Engineering at UC Berkeley this fall. He enjoys running cross country and track, solving NY Times crossword puzzles, and volunteering at a thrift store ministry. Wesley also manages an online vintage clothing business focused on sustainability. Having grown up in China, Wesley values the importance of welcoming and respecting people from all backgrounds. He is deeply appreciative of the Stand for the Silent scholarship, which supports his educational and professional aspirations.

How to Apply and Stay Updated

OTW Events encourages all eligible students to apply for the Fall 2024 scholarships starting October 1, 2024. Detailed application information will be available on the OTW Events website’s newsfeed section at www.otwmidwest.com. Updates will also be posted on OTW Events’ Instagram and LinkedIn pages. Additionally, local fundraising events will feature physical QR codes for easy access to scholarship applications.

OTW Events remains committed to fostering a culture of compassion and support within the Kansas City metro area. Stay tuned for future press releases detailing our other community drives, including our back-to-school drive and holiday toy drive.

For more information on OTW Events and its community-driven initiatives, please visit www.otwmidwest.com or follow us on Instagram @otwevents_kc and LinkedIn @OTW Events.


Ronald Carter Jr. Founder/CEO OTW Events


[email protected]

About OTW Events:

OTW Events is a Leawood-based marketing and fundraising company dedicated to making a positive impact in the Kansas City metro area. Through partnerships with organizations like Stand for the Silent, OTW Events strives to create meaningful change and support those in need within the community.

Media Contact
Company Name: OTW Events
Contact Person: Ronald Carter Jr. Founder CEO
Email: Send Email
Phone: 913-600-4337
City: Overland Park
State: Kansas
Country: United States
Website: www.otwmidwest.com