Scholarship means college is free for minority students By Cathy Spaulding Phoenix Staff Writer May 15, 2009 12:02 am 4 Fifteen area high school seniors have their college education paid for through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. And several of them have expressed their own ideas on what they 9ll do with the help. cThis means I get to go to college for free, d said Oktaha senior Ariel Allen, one of the area seniors to receive a Gates Millennium Scholarship.
cI was planning on just becoming a registered nurse, but now that I got this, I may just start out with nursing, but go on to be a doctor. d Established in 1999 by a $1 billion grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Gates Millennium Scholarship Program rewards minority students who show outstanding academic achievements and leadership abilities. They are awarded through partner organizations that serve minority students and pay for the student 9s post high school education, even into the post-graduate level. Muskogee High School senior Anmy Vu said she welcomes the opportunity.
cI never thought it would be possible to go outside the state for my education, d said Vu, who plans to ... more. less.
attend the University of California at Los Angeles. She said the Gates Scholarship will fund not only tuition, but also fees, books, room and board. cEven money for food, d Vu said.<br><br> cIt gives you more than enough money. d Vu said she plans to go into microbiology, cBut I may end up going to the College of Letters and Sciences. d During high school, Vu was president of the Asian Club and Spanish Club and belonged to the National Honor Society. But she finds time for fun. cEverything is about balance, d she said.<br><br> cI work hard. I do take time to study, but I do hang out with friends. d Sequoyah School, which has Native American students from across the state, has five Millennium Scholars: Rikki Shook of Oktaha, Shayne Boyd of Hulbert, Corey Still of Tahlequah, Kaheya Hooper of Bunch, and Courtney Reeder of Calumet. Earlier this year, the Gates Millennium Scholarship Foundation honored the school for its outstanding preparation of college-bound students.<br><br> In 2008, Sequoyah had the second highest number of Gates Millennium Scholars to come from any one high school in the United States and had the highest number of scholars in Gates 9 Native American division. cYou have to be able to do the work, challenge yourself mentally so you can keep up with the demands, d said Still, who was involved in the National Honor Society, the Sequoyah stickball team and was a member of the Cherokee Nation Tribal Youth Council. Reeder, a Sequoyah cheerleader who was active in cross country and dance, said she plans to attend the University of Oklahoma and major in Native American studies or medicine.<br><br> Allen, who was active in FFA, recalled the challenge of applying for the Gates scholarship. cI applied online and there are eight essays you have to write, d she said. cBut it was the most in-depth application I 9ve ever filled out.<br><br> I had to get a recommendation and a nomination. d However, Vu said the application paid off. cThere is nothing you can 9t achieve, d she said. cI encourage anyone who is eligible to apply for a Gates Scholarship. d Area Gates Millennium Scholars " Muskogee: Anmy Vu.<br><br> " Oktaha: Ariel Allen. Page 1 of 2 Scholarship means college is free for minority students 5/17/2009 http://www.muskogeephoenix.com/local/local_story_135000225.html/resources_printstory " Fort Gibson: Blake Whisenhunt, Bianca Macareno. " Hulbert: Elizabeth Speaks.<br><br> " Tahlequah: Brittany Cheater, Linsea Howard, Katherine Atkins. " Checotah: Carol Ann Morgan. " Sequoyah: Courtney Reeder, Kaheya Hooper, Shayne Boyd, Rikki Shook, Corey Still.<br><br> " Warner: Qualla Parman. Reach Cathy Spaulding at 918-684-2928 or Click Here to Send Email Copyright © 1999 - 2008 cnhi, inc. Page 2 of 2 Scholarship means college is free for minority students 5/17/2009 http://www.muskogeephoenix.com/local/local_story_135000225.html/resources_printstory<br><br>