R. Gabrielle McCormick

This week, thousands of families in the Houston area have been impacted by Hurricane Harvey.

Devastation like this always reminds me of those across the country who have survived tornados, wildfires, earthquakes, and more.

And while you may have never experienced a natural disaster, I’m sure there’s something that has happened to you over the course of your life that’s changed your perspective.

For me, I had a season-ending injury my senior year of high school followed by the loss of my grandfather. It wasn’t a “natural disaster”, but the pain and void was equally as intense.

How do we recover and heal from these events? Do we ever really forget?

No, of course not. It’s part of what makes us who we are today.

Whatever challenging moment you and your family may be facing right now or that you’ve overcome…use it in your scholarship essays and materials. Showcase that you’re a victor and not a victim. Share how you’ve gone or will go from tragedy to triumph.

These are the things that will separate you from other applicants. This is how you build a heart-to-heart connection with the committee. Please, share your story in this week’s scholarship picks:

  1. The Gates Scholarship: The Gates Scholarship is a highly selective, full scholarship for exceptional, Pell-eligible, minority, high school seniors. Starting in 2018, the scholarship will be awarded to 300 top student leaders each year with the intent of promoting their academic excellence through college graduation, and providing them the opportunity to reach their full potential. Please visit the website for additional information.
    Deadline: September 15, 2017
  2. We the Future Contest: This scholarship is open to students in K-12, current college students, graduate students, teachers, students 25 years and older, as well as senior adults ages 65 and up! Each category has a different set of requirements, so please visit the sponsoring committee’s website for more details.
    Award: Varies
    Deadline: September 17, 2017
  3. The Siemens Competition in Math, Science, & Technology: The Competition is the nation’s premier science research competition for high school students and seeks to promote excellence by encouraging students to undertake individual or team research projects. It fosters intensive research that improves students’ understanding of the value of scientific study and informs their consideration of future careers in these disciplines. Students in grades 9th-12th are eligible to compete.
    Award: $25,000-$100,000
    Deadline: September 19, 2017
  4. QuestBridge National College Match: This program is open to high achieving, high school seniors. To apply, students must have primarily A’s in the most challenging courses available, be in the top 5-10% of their graduating class, score a 1310 or higher on the SAT/PSAT or a 28 or higher on the ACT, and have a family income of $65,000 or less. Please visit the sponsoring organization’s site for more details.
    Deadline: September 27, 2017

I’m keeping our Houston readers in my thoughts. If you know a student or family that needs scholarship help, please make sure you reach out.