43 Cooke Young Scholars Accepted into College Scholarship Program

The Cooke Foundation’s undergraduate scholarship program announces its 21st cohort of exceptionally talented high school seniors

Lansdowne, VA (February 8, 2021) – The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation announced today that 43 current Cooke Young Scholars will continue to receive the organization’s comprehensive educational advising and financial support as Cooke College Scholars this fall. Through the Cooke College Scholarship Program, the Foundation provides Scholars with up to $40,000 per year for up to four years to complete a bachelor’s degree. Cooke Scholars also have access to opportunities for internships, study abroad, and a thriving community of motivated peers.

These students each entered the Cooke Young Scholars Program during their 8th grade year. Together, they have attended summer programs on college campuses and participated in enrichment programs in cities such as Athens, Greece, and Washington, DC.

Each Cooke Young Scholar and their family also work one-on-one with an educational adviser to create an individualized learning plan and maximize their high school experience. Members of this cohort have founded and led organizations, won regional and national academic competitions, published their works, been chosen as captains of teams, and conducted research at the collegiate level.

“It’s been an honor to support these Scholars in their journey to academic success–especially after such a year of unprecedented change and challenges,” said Executive Director Seppy Basili. “We are excited to see the achievements of such bright students unfold as they complete college and move into meaningful careers.” 

The Foundation is currently seeking applications for the 21st cohort of its Cooke Young Scholars program. High-performing 7th graders have until March 22, 2021 to apply to this five-year pre-college scholarship. Visit the Foundation’s website to view eligibility requirements and begin the application.

The Cooke Young Scholars Program serves as a pathway to the Foundation’s prestigious College Scholarship; that application is also open to high school seniors each fall. Last month, 496 high school seniors were selected as Cooke College Scholar Semifinalists from over 5,860 applicants nationwide. In April, the Foundation will announce Cooke College Scholar recipients.

The names of the Cooke College Scholars from the Young Scholars Program can be found below, listed along with the states and high schools they represent.


Esther An – Choate Rosemary Hall
Yulianna Cruz-Trinidad – Cate School
Joselyn Martinez – Notre Dame High School
Thuyvi Nguyen – Kipp San Jose Collegiate


Jade Klacko – Pine Crest School
Sully Maley – Saint Stephens Episcopal School
Megan Vaz – Phillips Academy


Irene Kwon – Phillips Academy
Eva Lewis – Tallulah Falls School
Ray Phillips – Gordon Lee Memorial High School


Robert Igbokwe – Latin School of Chicago
Abdu Sahibousidq – Phillips Academy
Summer Smentek – Plainfield South High School
Marc Trevino – Lincoln-Way West High School


Jhaughanessy Morris – Floyd Central High School


Vani Pandian – Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts
Joel Walker – Donaldsonville High School


Sam Cho – Montgomery Blair High School
Andrej Klema – Groton School


Chan Ju – Northfield Mount Hermon School


Lily Brenner – West Bloomfield High School


Natalie Gerads – Sauk Rapids-Rice High School


Jonathan Paolo Bautista – Jackson Academy


Jaekeb Harper – Phillips Exeter Academy


Esha Akhtar – Lawrenceville School
Adrian Vicioso – Dwight Englewood School


Ericka Familia – Horace Mann School
Jaden Garrett – Packer Collegiate Institute
Alex Leonardi – Hunter College High School
Ahmed Shekhani – Stuyvesant High School


Lucas Stokoszynski – Eugene Ashley High School


Dom Jocas – Western Reserve Academy
Rain Jocas – Western Reserve Academy


Rori Reiswig – Harding Charter Preparatory High School


Hyunjin Lee – Conestoga High School
Tori Sullivan – Princeton Day School


Cameron Lozano – Mansfield Timberview High School
Hector Martinez – Mathematics and Science Academy
Ian Poe – Liberal Arts and Science Academy High School
Maxx Shearod – Saint John’s School
Gia-Uyen Tran – Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science


Debby Lee – Episcopal High School


Natalie McVay – Timberline High School


The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Since 2000, the Foundation has awarded over $222 million in scholarships to over 2,800 students from 8th grade through graduate school, along with comprehensive educational advising and other support services. The Foundation has also provided $115 million in grants to organizations that serve such students.  www.jkcf.org

Media Contact: Julia Nelson, (571) 799-8067, media@jkcf.org