2016 Tillman Scholar

Adam Popp

Air Force
The George Washington University
M.A., Rehabilitation Counseling

“combining his hard-won experience with formal education to assist others in overcoming challenges, accomplishing their goals, and maximizing their potential.”

Yearning to be part of something bigger than himself and walk a path of purpose and service that would test every facet of his being, Adam entered the United States Air Force in 1997, becoming motivated and inspired every day. The most important lessons Adam learned during his 12 years in the service came during his recovery at Walter Reed after losing his leg to an IED in Afghanistan. During his 18-month recovery, Adam had the opportunity to learn from others recovering from a wide range of injuries and disabilities, witnessing first-hand the ways in which individuals handle the process of healing. Most importantly, Adam learned how important mentors, healthcare providers, and support networks are to a successful recovery. By the end of his stay, Adam had made the pledge to himself that he would serve to empower veterans in every way possible.

Having had the privilege of spending 19 years working within the military community, including the most recent nine years working with men and women battling both invisible and visible injuries, Adam’s main focus now is to pursue a degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from George Washington University. This program will enable him to become a Rehabilitation Counselor focused on veterans with disabilities, with the goal of working with military or private hospitals, the VA, non-profits, or other treatment centers. Adam knows when he combines his hard-won experience with formal education, he will be even better equipped to assist others in overcoming their challenges, accomplishing their goals, and maximizing their potential.