ACC Chemistry and Physics Student Receives Oberndorf Lifeline to Completion Scholarship

Amber Traylor Image

“Due to a disability, I haven't been able to find work in some time. I need scholarships to help fund my education and living expenses. Without this kind of financial assistance, I wouldn't be able to pursue my education.” - Amber Traylor, scholarship recipient

An Austin Community College District (ACC) student has been recognized with a national scholarship. 

Amber Traylor is one of only 15 students awarded the special $1,000 Oberndorf Lifeline Competition Scholarship

“When I found out about the scholarship, I was overjoyed. Scholarships are incredibly competitive, and I put a lot of effort into my applications. I am 31 years old and going to college for the first time ever. I am also a first-generation student and am so proud to be the first one to earn a degree for my family. It's never too late to pursue your education. You don't have to give up on your dreams just because you don't think you can afford it.” 

The scholarship helps students who are involved in their local chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), an international college honor society

“I joined PTK because I was looking for that sense of student community that is difficult to achieve through online classes during the pandemic. Since joining, I have met so many driven and passionate students, made friends, been presented with amazing opportunities, and really grown into myself as a person. Without PTK and ACC's Honors Program, I don't think that I would be working as hard as I am now to achieve the future I want.”

The Oberndorf Scholarship, named for its benefactors, Rosemary and Lou Oberndorf, is specifically designed to support students who have overcome a financial barrier that could prevent completion of college. As a non-traditional student, Amber — a double major in Chemistry and Physics — is setting her sights high.

“Once I finish my associate degree, I will continue with a double major for my bachelor's degree. I am hoping to then go to graduate school and finally complete a doctorate with a focus on cryogenic fuels. One day, I would love to work for NASA, SpaceX, Blue Origin, or the Space Force as a cryogenic fuel design and fluid management consultant.”

For more information or to join PTK, visit