Margaret “Peggy” Kanapaux Sullivan ’39 believed in making the most of your time. She also believed in education.
After graduating from the College, Sullivan served in World War II as a member of the Navy’s first class of WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service). After the war, she studied nutrition at the University of Missouri, earning her master’s in 1947. She returned to Charleston and worked as a biochemist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture Southeastern Vegetable Breeding Laboratory, then married and moved to California.
Before her death in 1998, Sullivan helped endow the Kanapaux-Magrath Scholarship Fund to support students with financial needs. Approximately four students benefit from her generosity each school year.
This past March, Kanapaux-Magrath scholar Elizabeth Burdette (pictured above), a junior from Rock Hill, S.C., led an Alternative Spring Break student trip to the impoverished neighborhood of Flor del Campo in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. There, she and her fellow students volunteered at the LAMB (Latin American Missionary and Bible) Institute, a ministry run by Suzy McCall ’79 that provides Hondurans with schooling and daycare, mentorship and gang-prevention counseling, sexual abuse safe-housing, missionary training and more.
In one of the more profound moments of the trip, Burdette met with three girls who were rescued from the sex trade. Freeing women from sexual slavery is one of Burdette’s passions in life, and this fall she is interning at Darkness to Light, a Charleston nonprofit organization that seeks to prevent sexual abuse of children. There, as well as in the English language classes she is teaching at a local church, she will educate non–native English speakers about their rights when it comes to their bodies and what they can do to stop abuse.
Sullivan, we know, would be proud of how Burdette is using her time at the College.