AZEdNews is honored to announce that the first four students awarded AZEdNews Scholarships are Gabriella Cerna, Airiana Madanski, Brighton Watson and Gage Zahn.
These four students’ scholarships, sponsored by The Brand Agency, provide each student with $500 to be used toward their post-secondary education at vocational/trade schools, community colleges, colleges and universities.
Students submitted 1-minute videos entries for the opportunity to win a scholarship. Scholarship funds are mailed directly to the post-secondary institution the students choose to attend. AZEdNews plans to offer scholarships to graduating public high school seniors again next year as well.
Chris Macomber, CEO of The Brand Agency, recently congratulated the students on their achievements and wished them well as they begin training for their careers.
“We are proud to sponsor these scholarships this year with AZEdNews we want to wish you all the success in your going future,” Macomber said.
“We know the end of this year was tough, but we know you’re going to be successful as you continue on in your journey,” Macomber said.
Gabriella Cerna, who graduated from Deer Valley High School in Glendale, said she plans to study biochemistry at Arizona State University.
“As a first-generation college student I know that higher education can be scary, and many individuals feel that they are not smart enough to succeed in it, but I know everyone can,” Cerna said in her scholarship entry video.
“That’s why I want to become a professor. Such a job will allow me to be a teacher and lifelong learner,” Cerna said.
“I look forward to empowering my students so that they understand that intelligence is not fixed, and that anyone can achieve anything,” Cerna said.
“I really thank AZEdNews for this scholarship opportunity because it will help me fund my education greatly,” Cerna said.
Airiana Madanski graduated from Highland High School in Gilbert. She plans to study nursing at Vanguard University of Southern California, which she will be attending on an academic and athletic scholarship and continue playing basketball.
“I graduated in the top 8 percent of my class all while playing four years on varsity, balancing a job at Lifetime Fitness and donating as much of my time as possible toward community service,” Madanski said in her scholarship entry video.
“Though I have scholarships up my sleeve, it’s still not enough for the tuition, dorm and book costs that I still have left, and my goal is to leave college with little to no debt so I can continue to graduate school and become a nurse practitioner,” Madanski said.
“I will be using the money towards some of my class expenses and dorm expenses, so thank you AZEdNews for the scholarship,” Madanski said.
Gage Zahn graduated from Sunrise Mountain High School in Peoria, and plans to study computer science at Grand Canyon University.
“My dream is to become a game designer,” Zahn said in his scholarship entry video.
“This scholarship will fund a much-needed laptop for my computer science degree, so that I can better achieve my goals,” Zahn said.
“AZEdNews is helping me fund my career. Thank you so much,” Zahn said.
Brighton Watson graduated from Pinnacle High School in Paradise Valley Unified School District and plans to study genetics, genomics and biotechnology and minor in graphic design.
“I got a job working at a pool in the City of Phoenix this summer, but the current COVID-19 climate has changed things for everyonone. The money I was going to be making this summer is up in the air at the moment,” Watson said in her scholarship entry video.
“This scholarship would really help me because I am the oldest of six kids,” Watson said. “I have a goal to put as little financial burden on my parents as possible so they can more easily pursue higher education as well.”
“I’m using my AZEdNews scholarship to go to Brigham Young University in Utah, and I’m super excited. Thank you so much,” Watson said.