Chris Jackson Computer Science Education Scholarship

Funded by
Chris Jackson
Learn more about the Donor
$5,000
1 winner every 6 months
Awarded
Winner
1
Finalists
5
Next Application Deadline
Mar 1, 2021
Next Winners Announced
Mar 31, 2021
Education Level
Undergraduate

Chris Jackson was an amazing human being who was smart, insightful and had a razor-sharp wit.

The greatest gift Chris had was that he always made the time to not just talk to you, but to be in that moment with you. He made you feel important because you had his full and undivided attention when you spoke to him, and he would always be the first to ask how he could help.

Chris was also an amazing father to his daughters Abby and Lily, a doting husband to his wife Karen, and a great friend to many people.

What most people don't know about Chris is how much he struggled to afford his degree in his early years. That degree ultimately helped him build a rewarding and impactful career in technology.

Sadly, Chris passed away in the fall of 2020. To honor his spirit and legacy, the Chris Jackson Computer Science Education Scholarship will support undergraduate students who are pursuing a computer science degree. The scholarship will be awarded twice a year.

Applicants will be required to discuss their interest in pursuing a computer science degree, their career aspirations, and why they think they should receive the award.

Education
Selection Criteria:
Passion, Ambition, Story
$5,000
1 winner every 6 months
Awarded
Winner
1
Finalists
5
Next Application Deadline
Mar 1, 2021
Next Winners Announced
Mar 31, 2021
Education Level
Undergraduate

Scholarship application

Essay Topic
  1. How did you get interested in pursuing a computer science degree?
  2. What is your goal or dream job after receiving your degree?
  3. Why do you feel you are the best candidate for receiving this scholarship?
300–500 words

Winning Application

Cameron Seymour-Hawkins
Berklee College of MusicBoston, MA
If you asked me what they were before the pandemic, I’d tell you Zoom was a handheld recording device and Coursera was a remedy for eczema I hadn’t tried. Now I am nearing the end of my first Coursera course in programming and plan to enroll in a class learning C++, data structures, and discrete math so I can get a Master’s Degree in Computer Science. With a background in music production, I have become increasingly more fascinated with computer science, more specifically the concept of Machine Learning, and how the software that I use every day is not only made, but came to be a constant in the entertainment industry. Once I develop the necessary foundational skills to write effective, succinct code, I would like to use the Chris Jackson Computer Science Education Scholarship to immerse myself in the study of AI and machine learning to improve how music is delivered and experienced. In the media, the field of computer science, is portrayed as a very solitary activity, yet the more I learn about it, the more I find that this could not be further from the truth. Computer scientists are continuously collaborating with specialists, manufacturers, artists, potential users, and each other to deliver the best possible consumer experience. This inspires me because collaboration is at the heart of my work as a sound engineer. Ultimately, I have a lot of interests; music, politics, advocacy, and technology to name a few, and have always dipped my toes in many different subjects. My goal moving forward is to merge all these interests and be involved in creating the platforms and technology that people use to engage with these topics and most importantly, with each other. For years, I longed to be like the students who seemed to finish undergrad in four years with little stressors, but looking back, I wouldn’t trade any of the twists and turns my journey has taken me on to get my undergraduate degree. These include temping to help international students apply for visas, struggling for years in a retail job, community organizing, supporting my family, and many other detours. Not being able to finish my degree on a traditional timeline permitted me to learn outside the confines of the classroom. This path has shown me that computer science affects everything I care about. It has also made me embrace being a lifelong learner. I feel I am the best candidate for receiving this scholarship because like Chris Jackson, a scholarship such as this would make a huge difference in my ability to go to school since I come from a working-class background. Also, as I stated earlier, I am pursuing computer science out of a love of building meaningful relationships with people and working together through technology to solve problems. From the description of this award, it sounds like Chris rooted his computer science work in connection with people, which is ultimately what I wish to do, too.

FAQ

When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Mar 1, 2021. Winners will be announced on Mar 31, 2021.