By Nikki Castro
With a dream to become a teacher, The Teachers of Tomorrow Scholarship made it more of a reality for 60 students at Grand Rapids Community College this year. This scholarship was an amazing surprise to many students receiving it, that really broke through as a huge impact in their lives.
“Reading the email, my heart started racing. I started crying. I couldn’t believe it was real,” said one of the recipients, Marrina Jones.
The financial relief that comes with winning a scholarship was a huge factor for the winners.
“It felt as if a literal weight had been lifted off of my shoulders,” Jones said. “Paying for school has been one of the toughest mountains I’ve had to climb thus far in life.”
For scholarship recipient, Sabrina Burd,22, from Orleans, the award means a lot.
“Scholarships are not just handed out, they need to be earned. I put time into filling out applications, and spent time writing many essays for other scholarships.” Burd said. “Like I said, being awarded this specific scholarship has lifted a weight off my shoulders in helping pay my tuition and continuing to be debt free.”
Having a secure feeling that financial support is there for them, they have a sense of stress relief.
“I am so thankful for this scholarship,” said Waleeda Clark. “Paying for school can be a true stressor. On top of other financial obligations, it can weigh on your mental capacity. Receiving this scholarship kept me hopeful and motivated me to never doubt myself or my abilities.”
Another winner, Ivan Diaz, 21, of Grand Rapids, explained, that getting the scholarship, “…was one of the few moments where I felt genuinely proud of myself, and I realized I had made the right choice.”
Many question the likelihood of actually winning scholarship money, and most think it is a waste of time to fill out applications. But, Burd encourages fellow students to apply. “I encourage everyone to apply for any and all (scholarships) that are applicable to them. There are plenty of chances and opportunities for you to get one if not more scholarships.”
In other words, Ivan Diaz says, “ I would encourage anyone who is even curious about a career in education to apply for this scholarship, you literally have nothing to lose.”
The Teachers of Tomorrow Scholarship helps make a dream a little more of a reality. Make sure to be looking on www.grcc.edu every semester for scholarships that may fit your major or even possible qualifications you may have.