Advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need

Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Announces 2009 College Scholarships


Thirty Two Low-Income, Exceptional High School Students Heading To College This Fall
Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Awards 2009 College Scholarships to High-Achieving Teens
Interests Range from Rollercoaster Design to International Relations to Music
“I learned that the world is filled with people-each of us is just one grain of sand in a whole ocean. There are people who are just like me, and there are people who are so different from me that the only thing we have in common is that we’re both human. But that is the comforting truth…” –Joseph Bolognese, Stow, OH
“I’ve always had an incredible network of teachers and mentors that have guided me to achieve my goals. Thanks to my family I have come to understand the importance of education and discipline. That has driven me to explore fields I never thought I would like and pursue my goals with determination.” –Lina Torres, Arlington, VA
Landsdowne, VA –The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation today awarded 32 low-income, exceptional high school seniors scholarships to attend the college of their choice this fall. The recipients of the 2009 College Scholarships program are drawn from the Foundation’s Young Scholars Program, and comprise high-achieving high-school seniors who have overcome economic adversity and other challenges to pursue their academic goals.
This year’s scholarship recipients are from 17 states and will attend some of the top institutions in the country and the world:  four will attend Yale University, two will attend Princeton University, and one plans to study at Oxford University in England. The students will receive scholarships of up to $30,000 per year for four years.
The Young Scholars program is highly competitive. Each year, more than 1,000 high-achieving seventh graders from throughout the nation apply to the program, which provides the most personalized, generous high school scholarship experience in the United States. Young Scholars are eligible to apply to the Foundation for support for college and graduate school.
Although getting a college degree is viewed as critically important in today’s highly competitive world, low-income students with great academic potential faced limited opportunities to go to college. Studies show that low-income students are virtually shut out of the nation’s most selective colleges. While about 47 percent of undergraduate students nationally receive federal aid for college (Pell grants), only 10 percent of undergraduates at top U.S. colleges are Pell grant recipients.
"These scholarships make it possible for students with limited resources to realize their potential, which is vital in today’s economic climate,” says Dr. Matthew J. Quinn, the Foundation's executive director. “President Obama has stated how important it is for our kids to have a college education to help America compete in a global society. These are exceptional kids who want to pursue that dream, and we have been working closely with them since the 8th grade to nurture their talents and help them identify how to get there."
Because the Foundation provides support to these kids for as long as 15 years, (from high school, to college, to graduate school), Dr. Quinn estimates that it invests between $100,000 to $250,000 per scholar.
“Through our programs, we are giving tens of thousands of children the opportunity to realize their potential and a shot at the American dream. We give these kids a chance to excel, a chance they might otherwise not have,” adds Joshua Wyner, executive vice president of the Foundation.
This year’s scholars are from diverse backgrounds and are committed to giving back.
·         Rosanna Kim is the child of two deaf parents, who learned to sign before she learned to speak or read. The experience of having to serve as her parents’ interpreter has taught Rosanna the value of service, an area she would like to continue after college.
·         Dashell Laryea has learned the hard way about perseverance. At one point, his immigrant single mother was homeless. But she never gave up and instilled that spirit in her son. Dashell calls his mother “the greatest teacher and mentor in my life.” After college, he plans to become a lawyer and an advocate for the underserved.
Like Rosanna and Dashell, the 32 college scholars for 2009 have a vast array of skills and experience:
·         Lina Torres studied Arabic in Egypt
·         Brian Schoener wants to be a civil engineer and design rollercoasters
·         Victoria Usova is fluent in four languages
·         Constance Cho started a musical society to bring music into her community
About the Foundation
The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is a private foundation dedicated to helping young people of exceptional promise reach their full potential through education. The Foundation provides challenging opportunities to high achievers from lower-income families through its Young Scholars Program, generous scholarships for undergraduate and graduate study, and grants to nonprofit organizations and educational institutions. 
2009 Scholarship Recipients Are:
Anthony Alvarez
Resides: Jonesville, MI
Four Year College or University:   University of Chicago
Joseph Bolognese
Resides:   Stow, OH
Four Year College or University: University of Southern California 
Kathryn Brill
Resides:   Worcester, MA
Four Year College or University:  Barnard College
Constance Cho
Resides: Columbia, MO
Four Year College or University: Yale University 
Yeojun Chun
Resides: Mishawaka, IN
Four Year College or University: California Institute of Technology 
Marguerite Conners
Resides: Wolcott, NY
Four Year College or University: Dartmouth College 
Tuong Dang
Resides: Silver Spring, MD
Four Year College or University: American University   
Ethan Engel
Resides: Chattanooga, TN
Four Year College or University: Vassar College 
Geordie Folinas
Resides: Spring Lake Heights, NJ
Four Year College or University: Worcester Polytechnic Institute 
Joseph Frazier
Resides: Wilmington, NC
Four Year College or University: Carnegie Mellon University 
Ian Goller
Resides: Fishers, IN
Four Year College or University: University of Chicago 
Thuy Ho
Resides: Chantilly, VA
Four Year College or University: Yale University 
Soonwook Hong
Resides: Lorton, VA
Four Year College or University: Yale University 
Yerin Jeon
Resides: Gainesville, FL
Four Year College or University: Princeton University 
Yongju Jung
Resides: Los Angeles, CA
Four Year College or University: Princeton University 
Joan Kim
Resides: Temple City, CA
Four Year College or University: Cornell University   
Hyungtae Kim
Resides: Okemos, MI
Four Year College or University: Columbia University 
Rosanna Kim
Resides: Gaithersburg, MD
Four Year College or University: Swarthmore College 
Sharon Ko
Resides: Los Angeles, CA
Four Year College or University: University of Southern California 
Dashell Laryea
Resides: South Riding, VA
Four Year College or University: Yale University 
Jiageng Luan
Resides: Worcester, MA
Four Year College or University: Yale University 
Ken Marks-Bzdell
Resides: Meridian, ID
Four Year College or University: Duke University 
Jasmine Miller
Resides: Nashville, TN
Four Year College or University: Harvard University 
Dijon Olave
Resides: New York, NY
Four Year College or University: Connecticut College 
Yakov Pechersky
Resides: Briarwood, NY
Four Year College or University: Harvard University 
Keely Rasmussen
Resides: Federal Way, WA
Four Year College or University: Stanford University 
Brian Shoener
Resides: Scranton, PA
Four Year College or University: Bucknell University 
Travis Snider
Resides: Arlington, VA
Four Year College or University: George Mason University 
Dustin Stanton
Resides: Seymour, IN
Four Year College or University: Butler University 
Travis Tindell
Resides: Saint Cloud, FL
Four Year College or University: Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University 
Lina Torres
Resides: Arlington, VA
Four Year College or University: Wellesley College 
Victoria Usova
Resides: Houston, TX
Four Year College or University: Oxford University 





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