Good news arrived on the same exact day for two seniors. Priyanka Kumar and Hayeon Lee both learned on Feb. 26 that they were chosen as recipients of two highly competitive scholarships.
“We are both friends and we are in the same honors English class so when we each found out that we got the scholarships on the same day we just ran up to each other hugged as soon as we got into class,” said Kumar.
Priyanka Kumar was awarded the Coca-Cola Scholarship, which provides $20,000 for college tuition. Hayeon Lee was named a recipient of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s Cooke College Scholarship Program.
Kumar was selected as one of 150 students from among more than 95,000 applications who were awarded the scholarship and an invitation to attend a Scholar’s Weekend in Atlanta.
The scholarship is awarded to students who show leadership, who seek to give back to the community, and who strive to understand different cultures. Kumar wrote about her work with the Diversity and Inclusion Committee at Hotchkiss and the STEM program she developed for students in the region.
Hayeon Lee was named a recipient of the Cooke College Scholarship Program, which awards recipients with up to $40,000 annually for four years. This year’s group of semifinalists was chosen from 6,174 applicants.
As an immigrant from South Korea and a soon-to-be first-generation college student, Lee says that the scholarship will open new doors for her.
“If you were to ask me in middle school about attending college, I probably would have said it was impossible because my parents didn’t have the means for it,” she said.
“This scholarship does not only affect me, but my chance to give back, grow as a student, and help my family,” she said. Lee is also a Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholar, A Better Chance Scholar, and the recipient of Hotchkiss’s Allan C. Hoffman Scholarship.
The two students have not selected which college or university they plan to attend this fall.