Media Release: Foundation College Scholars Accepted to Nation’s Most Competitive Colleges and Universities

Lansdowne, VA – The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s outstanding new class of 86 College Scholars will attend some of the best colleges and universities in the nation this fall. The Foundation’s College Scholarship Program is one of the most selective scholarships in the nation having an acceptance rate of 1.6% during the last competition. Scholars are selected based on financial need as well as their academic achievements, persistence, leadership, and desire to help others. Scholars boast an average unweighted high school GPA of 3.9, excellent standardized test scores, and now an impressive array of first-rate college acceptances. The class profile can be found at

“This is our most competitive class of College Scholars yet,” said Emily Froimson, vice president of programs. “They are an extraordinary group of young people already, not only academically accomplished but deeply committed to giving back to their communities. We are confident they will continue to impress and inspire us in college and beyond.”

In addition to receiving the most generous scholarship in the nation, Scholars receive multifaceted personal advising as they transition to and progress through college and access to a robust peer community.

Out of the 86 College Scholars, all are attending competitive institutions; 70, or 81%, have committed to attend schools defined as the nation’s most competitive schools by Barron’s Profiles of American Colleges. A large number of College Scholars have committed to Harvard University, 11 in all, followed by nine to Columbia University, and seven to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Other notable institutions include Amherst College, Stanford University, University of Notre Dame, Tufts University, and Yale University.

The following is a complete list of students selected for the 2014 Jack Kent Cooke Foundation College Scholarship Program:

Marwa Elgazzar (Chelsea, AL)
Jovanna Figueroa (Phoenix, AZ)
Robert London (Lakeside, AZ)
Erika Banuelos (Phoenix, AZ)
Patric Cao (Chandler, AZ)
Giacomo Koszegi (Peoria, AZ)
Jukurious Davis (West Helena, AR)
America Bautista (San Jose, CA)
Emily Duong (Orange, CA)
Sophia Nguyen (Fremont, CA)
Pak Kwan (San Leandro, CA)
Samuel Rodriguez (San Diego, CA)
Bryce Primavera (Arvada, CO)
Viviana Andazola Marquez (Thornton, CO)
Leib Celnik (Lafayette, CO)
Abena Asare-Bediako (Washington, DC)
Anthony Haynie (Washington, DC)
Natnael Kassaw (Washington, DC)
Bryan Peacker (Orlando, FL)
Spencer Pearlman (Pembroke Pines, FL)
Anika Yasmin (Key West, FL)
Osei Avril (Decatur, GA)
Conner Regan (Buford, GA)
Lauren Whittaker (Atlanta, GA)
Kataeya Wooten (Cartersville, GA)
Soobin Oh (Sugar Hill, GA)
Oluwatomisin Adelusi (Lilburn, GA)
Ronald Hitt (Albany, GA)
Cydney Swain (Griffin, GA)
Anna Beatrice Grimaldo (Orofino, ID)
Brennan Wakey (Springfield, IL)
John Cliburn (Cloverport, KY)
James Hughes (Marion, KY)
Benjamin Arbaugh (Westminster, MD)
Elizabeth Gonzalez (Baltimore, MD)
Regina Mae Ledesma (Cockeysville, MD)
Sarah Wood (Snow Hill, MD)
Anastasia Neuman (Abingdon, MD)
Abbeygale Anderson (Dorchester, MA)
Audrey Fernandez (Lawrence, MA)
Phuong Nghi Pham (Boston, MA)
Patrick Soltis (Jackson, MI)
Konrad Walek (Howell, MI)
Minna Wybrecht (Ypsilanti, MI)
My Bui (Saint Paul, MN)
Loriya Thao (Saint Paul, MN)
Kimberly Sanford (Columbus, MS)
Marjada Tucker (Starkville, MS)
Cynthia Odu (Kansas City, MO)
Hyung-Do Kim (Palisades Park, NJ)
Adella Pierre (Newark, NJ)
Daniel An (Kew Garden Hills, NY)
Omid Cohensedgh (Great Neck, NY)
Timothy Diovanni (Massapequa Park, NY)
Julia Lee (Bronx, NY)
Kaitlyn Shin (Jericho, NY)
Juliet Kim (Bronx, NY)
Shannon Boone (Garysburg, NC)
Ahmed Attia (Fargo, ND)
Jacob Hirsch (Chillicothe, OH)
Vanessa Chen (Canton, OH)
Jiayin Peng (Shaker Heights, OH)
Chelsea Hipwell (Cheltenham, PA)
Katelin McCall (Landrum, SC)
Chien-Hsiang Huang (Lexington, SC)
Ming Jun Wilson (Johnson City, TN)
Preston Butler (Maryville, TN)
William Ritter (Richardson, TX)
Jaime Lopez (Pharr, TX)
Angel Maredia (League City, TX)
Erin Nguyen (Garland, TX)
Karely Osorio (Houston, TX)
Wesley Runnels (Desoto, TX)
Ye Eun Sim (El Paso, TX)
Maria Martinez (Brownsville, TX)
Jennifer Han (Pflugerville, TX)
Adele Woodmansee (Westfield, VT)
Biruktawit Assefa (Arlington, VA)
Sarah Kashef (Chantilly, VA)
Yoojin Kook (Burke, VA)
Amy McMillen (Chesapeake, VA)
Luria Greene (Hampton, VA)
Mostafa Negm (Crewe, VA)
Zachary Zumbo (Chester, VA)
Nathan Miller (Manitowoc, WI)
Amara McCune (Stoughton, WI)



The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is a private, independent foundation dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Because we believe that high-potential, low-income students will excel educationally when given the resources to develop their talents, the Foundation supports exceptional students from elementary school to graduate school through scholarships, grants, direct service, and knowledge creation and dissemination. Founded in 2000 by the estate of Jack Kent Cooke, the Foundation has awarded $120 million for over 2,000 scholarships and $76 million in grants to organizations that support our mission.