Caitlin Venedam, a Freedom Alliance Scholarship recipient, is a senior studying a semester abroad at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.
The daughter of Mrs. Deborah Venedam and Sergeant Charles Venedam, Caitlin has received a Freedom Alliance scholarship since 2008 and will finish her degree in fine and performing arts this year.
Caitlin’s father, SGT Charles Venedam of the United States Army was injured in Vietnam when he took enemy inflicted mortar wounds to both knees while setting up a claymore mine to protect our perimeter. He has been awarded numerous medals and commendations including the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.
SGT Venedam also sustained a facial wound in Vietnam causing 85 percent hearing loss in his right ear and has been diagnosed with bladder and prostate cancer due to the effects of being exposed to Agent Orange.
“The affects of Vietnam have always had a subtle place in my life,” explained Caitlin, “but it wasn’t until I was ready to enter high school that I began to understand and truly respect the military. I gained an appreciation and deeper respect for my father and his experiences in Vietnam.”
Caitlin is an active member of her school and community. She is a member of the National Collegiate Honors Society, works with the autistic, and helps raise money for and participates in Relay for Life. In high school she spent four years in the Navy JROTC, was a member of the French Honor Society, and received the 2007 Principal’s Achievement Award.
“My scholarship has given me the assistance necessary to study in London this semester,” said Caitlin. “Although the schedule here can be grueling, the benefits of the education I am acquiring cannot be numbered. I’m truly grateful for my scholarships from Freedom Alliance.”
Freedom Alliance is proud of Caitlin’s academic and civic accomplishments and grateful for SGT Venedam’s service to our country. By providing a scholarship to his daughter, Freedom Alliance is pleased to honor SGT Venedam and all like him who have been injured in service to our country.