Stories of the Class of 2017: Remembering Erika Miller

Erika Miller was only six months away from receiving her bachelor's degree in Sociology from the University of Northern Colorado when she was killed in a November 1996 car accident. Wanting her memory to live on, her parents established a scholarship in Erika's name that's been helping sociology majors ever since.

So when department faculty realized that this year would have been the 20th anniversary of Erika's graduation if she'd lived, they received permission to award a rare posthumous degree.

During the Sociology Department's spring awards celebration, Provost Robbyn Wacker presented a posthumous degree for Erika to her parents, Bill and Carol Miller, who traveled from their home in South Carolina to accept their daughter's diploma and award this year's Erika Lynn Miller Scholarship to Talon Scovill. The scholarship goes to UNC sociology students who demonstrate a desire to help children and families in need.

She was a member of the Family Studies Club and served as its president during the 1995-96 school year. In 1995, she was a UNC Ambassador, giving tours of the campus to prospective students and their parents, and also worked in the Office of Admissions.

Erika's degree emphasis was in Family Studies. She minored in Early Childhood Education and Women's Studies, and planned to pursue her teaching certification.

- UNC News Service