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Prestigious Scholarships Awarded to Several TJ Students

Posted 05/09/2008 by Ben Gilliland

TJ seniors are rewarded for their hard work in high school.
by Ben Gilliland
photo by Manny Perez


    Over the past several months seniors from Thomas Jefferson High School have been competing with other students from across the nation for scholarships, and six TJ seniors have been awarded with several different prestigious awards.
     Christina Danek was awarded the Boettcher Scholarship in mid February. The competition for the Boettcher is very vigorous, and it is only available for students in the state of Colorado. To apply for the scholarship students had to have scored at least a 27 on the ACT, and ranked in the top 5% of their class. The Boettcher is a four year scholarship that pays for tuition, books, supplies and various other costs, and is only good for colleges in the state of Colorado (both public and private). They also look for students who do a lot of community service and extra curricular activities. To receive the scholarship Danek had to write several essays, get numerous letters of recommendation, and go through a long interview process. Danek has decided to take the scholarship, and will attend the University of Denver in the fall. “It was an honor to be awarded the scholarship, and it was exciting to see that all of my hard work over the last four years has paid off,” said Danek.
     Josie Cooper was awarded the Daniels Fund Scholarship, which will pay for a majority of college costs for four years. It is a very competitive local scholarship that can be used for any college in the nation. To be eligible for the scholarship students had to be nominated by a teacher or counselor, and have at least a 17 ACT score. The Daniels Foundation also looks at obstacles that the students had to overcome, and how they were successful despite those obstacles. Cooper also had to write several essays, get letters of recommendation, and go through an interview process to receive the award. Cooper will use the scholarship to attend the University of Redlands in California. “Getting this scholarship was amazing, and I know that going to college will open so many doors for me. Once you are not afraid of trying to improve your life, you can do anything,” said Cooper.
     Both Jasser Mohamed and Mahilet Hailemichael were awarded the Gates Millennium Scholarship, which is a full-ride scholarship that can be used at any college in the country. The scholarship pays for all costs, and in addition can pay for college through a PhD, depending on the student’s major. Like the Boettcher and the Daniels Fund, the Gates Millennium Scholarship is highly competitive. To be eligible for the scholarship the student had to have a minimum unweighted GPA of 3.3, and had to be of an ethnic minority background, whether that be Hispanic, African American, Native American, Asian, or Pacific Islander. Both Mohamed and Hailmichael had to be involved in several community service and extra curricular activities, as well as write numerous essays, have letters of recommendation, and go through several interviews. Mohamed will use the scholarship to attend Colorado State University, while Hailmichael will attend Colorado School of Mines. “I am really excited about learning and getting closer to my future. I am also excited to be the first girl in my family to go to college,” said Hailmichael.
     Philip Karlberg and Danek were also awarded the Denver Retired Teachers’ Scholarship. To be eligible the students had to be ranked in the top three of their class. Both Danek and Karlberg will receive $6,000. Karlberg will be attending Colorado State University.
    Finally, Kelly Hill was awarded the Ethridge Future Teacher Scholarship, which is available for students who have a 3.0 GPA, and wanted to major in teaching. Hill will receive $3,000 per year for four years, and she will also be attending Colorado Sate University.
     Scholarships are still available for seniors who are looking for some more money to help pay for college. Students looking for scholarships can head down to the future center in room 114 to get all the information they need.
    “I am very proud of all the students. They worked hard, and deserve all of the honors they are receiving. They are fantastic role models for future TJ graduates,” said the Future Center Advisor Cynthia Castillo.