For DonorsFor Applicants

The Best is Yet to Come- August Engler Memorial Scholarship

2 winners, $1,500 each
Application Deadline
May 1, 2025
Winners Announced
Jun 1, 2025
Education Level
High School
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school senior

The August Engler Memorial Scholarship honors the memory of August Engler, who tragically lost his life to an overdose after a long battle with mental health issues and medication dependency. Despite his struggles, August remained steadfast in his belief that higher education was a path to a brighter future.

Two scholarships of $1,500 each are available to young adults who have faced mental health or substance use challenges. These scholarships aim to support those who, despite adversity, are committed to pursuing their dreams of attending college or trade school.

Any high school senior in Massachusetts who will pursue a college degree may apply for this scholarship opportunity. Those students dedicated to pursuing careers in drug and alcohol addiction counseling are strongly encouraged to apply.

To apply, write an essay outlining your dreams and explaining why you believe "The Best is Yet to Come.”

By applying for or donating to this scholarship, you can help turn dreams into reality. Whether you’re seeking support for your educational journey or contributing to the future success of others, your involvement makes a profound difference. Together, we can honor August's legacy and ensure that "The Best is Yet to Come" for many more deserving individuals.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Drive, Impact
Published June 12, 2024
Essay Topic

Please outline your dreams and explaining why you believe "The Best is Yet to Come.”

400–600 words

Winning Application

Lily Duarte
Martha'S Vineyard Regional HighAQUINNAH, MA
It first bloomed at the young age of 12. I was in 7th grade at the time, sitting in my history classroom, when, all of a sudden, something began to flare up inside of me. Deep within was an unnerving feeling of dread and uncertainty. This uncomfortable feeling began to claw at my throat. At this moment, I knew that I needed to leave the classroom immediately. I ran out of the school, my vision becoming blurry and my heart rate increasing with each step I took, trying to hurry to the nurse's office. The feeling increasingly worsened as I sat in the nurse's office. I was the feeling of sudden death that clouded my 12-year-old head. I didn't know this at the time, but I had been having a panic attack. Something I had never felt before in my entire life. After that day, my mom called to get me scheduled with a counselor to investigate the cause of my panic attack further, and I was eventually diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder, a severe and often debilitating case of anxiety. And for me, it was debilitating. I spent the entire rest of my middle school life struggling with my mental health, having to go to the hospital for my graphic thoughts of suicide, and often getting into arguments with my parents about my mental health interfering with my daily life. I was constantly contemplating suicide. With my anxiety disorder came depressive episodes and low self-esteem. And with low self-esteem came eating disorders related to starving and binging. It was a back-to-back cycle of these three mental health disorders looming over my back, fogging my head with vertigo and slowing me down more and more. My grades became F's and D's, and visions of my future became dull. And I began to think I could never amount to anything... and I would never be able to overcome my cycle of anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, and disordered eating. But, recently, I have come out of the slum of letting my mental illness control me. Education is the prime factor for my recovery. Being educated isn't only about being school-smart but about being smart about you. See, when you're struggling with mental illness, you need a sense of self-awareness. It is difficult to do it alone, so we need teachers, educators, and therapists to teach us why we act this way and how to stop it before it worsens. After I understood how my mental illness was triggered, and after I understood how to handle my mental health outbursts, I was able to control myself fully and take the matter into my own hands. Ultimately, it helped me grow into who I am today. I am lucky to live today and have experienced mental health struggles, so in the future, I can take my knowledge and education and pass it on to others who are in the deep slums of mental health struggles. Mental education is an essential catalyst for self-improvement and positive change in today's society. Because so many Americans live with mental health issues and don't get any help for them, many of them end up hurting themselves or others due to struggling so hard, and my heart goes out to them. And I'm pleased to be alive, and I'm delighted not to have given into the dark thoughts of ending my own life. Understanding ourselves and being educated about ourselves is crucial to helping ourselves feel better. And with that education, I have learned it is my dream to help others positively change and overcome mental health challenges.
Heyttor Nunes
Martha's Vineyard Regional High SchoolOAK BLUFFS, MA
Through your my life there has been many obstacles that i have had to jump over. One of my biggest would be the alcoholism that myself and my family have been trying to fight for the past 7 years of our life’s. it’s been hard having to go to school on a day where I got little to no sleep because of the fact that I had to stay up all night wondering if myself or my brothers were safe because of the rampage going on down the hall. Having to go to all my classes, getting good grades, and putting myself in positions to succeed and achieve the goal of being the first high school graduate and the first to go to college in my family. While trying to set the best examples for my little brothers who have been through the same things. Life isn’t the easiest to succeed in when it brings unexpected deaths like one of your friends taking their very life because of substance abuse. Life will through curve balls at you and it will mess you up in ways that you don’t even understand you can be hurt. I’ve had to over come so many things in my high school years and I will never forget how long or how hard those things have damaged me but that’s what makes me who I am today and I will never forget any of the problems or who caused them and what I have over come and the ways it helped me. Not only the people along the way that I lost and gained helped me realize that life keeps going on without me wanting it to but you have to learn to keep pushing through. Nothing in life will every be permanent but they memories you make with the people you love and the people that become your anti depressants. As a police officer I hope to be someone’s anti depressants every time I interact with someone or help a group. It’s been a dream of mine for the past 3 years and i’m going to pursue it head on and make sure that I truly cam be a good that comes out of all of the trama that I have been given. It will forever be my dream to help people all over the world and that is what i’m going to do with my degree.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is May 1, 2025. Winners will be announced on Jun 1, 2025.