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Two OU Students Named Tillman Scholars

Two OU Students Named Tillman Scholars

portraits of the scholars

University of Oklahoma students Christiana Obioma and Sara Wray have been named 2021 Tillman Scholars.

Obioma and Wray are among 60 U.S. service members, veterans and military spouses named to the Pat Tillman Foundation’s 13th class of scholars. With their selection for the honor, 12 OU students have received the award since 2009.

Tillman Scholars are selected for their high potential for impact as demonstrated through a proven track record of leadership, the continued pursuit of education and the commitment of their resources to service beyond self.

The foundation provides recipients with academic scholarships, a national peer network and professional development opportunities – empowering the scholars to make an impact at home and around the world.

Obioma is in her third year of medical school at the OU College of Medicine.

Determined to make a difference, Obioma immigrated from Nigeria to the United States in 2013. Quickly after, she enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserve as a combat medic, where she learned medical skills and the importance of serving others.  

“It is a great honor to be accepted into this prestigious organization and connect with renowned individuals who are making positive impacts all over the world,” she said. “I am looking forward to networking with other Tillman Scholars, honoring Pat Tillman’s legacy and the values of the Tillman Foundation while serving my community by improving health care access as a future physician.”

Obioma is extremely active in the medical community, serving as treasurer of the Student National Medical Association and as a member of the Family Medicine Interest Group. She recently completed a term as secretary of the Global Health Student Representative

As a physician, she hopes to improve the health of underserved populations in her community and internationally by building teams with interdisciplinary health professionals that will provide patient-centered care, promote patient education and preventative health care in medically underserved communities.

Originally from Abia, Nigeria, Obioma is the daughter of Chris and Ngozi Obioma. Prior to medical school she earned a Bachelor of Science in biomedical sciences from the University of Central Oklahoma

Wray, a first-year student at the OU College of Law, spent nearly seven years advocating for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault before coming to law school. Wray is a military spouse – her husband, Mark Wray, is a major in the Air Force.  

“Being named a Tillman Scholar means a tremendous amount to me,” Wray said. “I am especially humbled after learning about my program cohort and the standard they set. For me, honoring Pat Tillman’s legacy means pursuing with 100% commitment what I believe in – valuing action over words and truth over comfort.”

Through her experience as a victim advocate, Wray became acutely aware of the lack of representation and power imbalances that many face in the legal system, which motivated her to pursue a law degree.

In 2016, she received the Oklahoma County Bar Association’s Liberty Bell Award, which is given to non-attorneys making an impact on the legal system, for her work leading the Domestic Violence Victim Assistance Program.

Currently, in addition to attending law school, she serves as a victim advocate for Survivors United, an organization that helps sexual assault victims of U.S. military members, and as the founder of Gruntled Greetings, a greeting card company created to nurture meaningful exchanges with loved ones, no matter the physical distance.

As a lawyer, Wray hopes to continue fulfilling her mission to create access, build community and increase public safety by amplifying the rights and voices of survivors of abuse.

A native of Pottstown, Pennsylvania, Wray earned a Bachelor of Arts in history from Bucknell University before attending OU Law.

More information on the Tillman Scholars Program can be found at


By Mackenzie Scheer

Article Published:  Wednesday, July 14, 2021