For DonorsFor Applicants

Onward and Upward Scholarship

Funded by
1st winner$503
2nd winner$500
3rd winner$500
Application Deadline
May 19, 2024
Winners Announced
Jun 19, 2024
Education Level
High School
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school senior

The traditional pursuit of a college education after high school is only the best path for some students. 

There are other methods of post-graduate education that can be valuable and impactful for students pursuing certain fields. Even if a student doesn’t excel in high school, it is not the end of their story. All students deserve financial help to shoot their shot at life, especially after high school.

This scholarship seeks to support students who need financial assistance in order to pursue their career goals.

Any high school senior who is a Black American may apply for this scholarship opportunity. An A-average winner will receive $502, a B-average winner will be given $501, and a C-average winner will receive $500.

To apply, upload your college application essay or write a new essay about why you’re pursuing your chosen field.

Selection Criteria:
Optimistic, Perseverance, Humility
Published December 21, 2023
Essay Topic

Why do you want to pursue your interested endeavor after high school?

0–650 words

Winning Applications

Rachel Cherubin
Florida Virtual School Flex 9-12Sanford, FL
Throughout my life, I’ve heard these words go around: “It’s the little things that count.” To be candid, until last year, I didn't really resonate with that until now. Initially, I believed that by doing these small acts, I might be recognized for them which could lead me to bigger opportunities. However, this wasn’t the case in my situation. It was this realization that challenged my perspective on the significance of small acts both on the ends of the giver and the receiver. As a self-taught musician and music producer, everything I know has either been learned from online resources and the guidance of friends. From growing up in the church, I was able to explore many instruments and styles, which made the foundation that I have today. For quite some time, I contributed to the music community by transcribing music for people. While these tasks were small, the joy expressed by the people when they could learn a song through the sheet music I provided outweighed any accolade I could receive. In church, music wasn't just a soundtrack; it was a lifeline. It was in those moments that I was introduced to the wonderful world of sound. I've always known that I wanted to be a part of it and I've always told myself that I was going to be a part of it. The goal is to have my work featured in multiple entertainment streams such as films, commercials, and featured with Tech companies. My ultimate dream? To build myself a well rounded career which I can use to give back to the music community. For quite some time, I've transcribed and made music for other people, but through that I've also seen issues and needs of the people is the music community. A few examples would be: 1. An app that specifically made for moods. The song recommendation and/or playlist would change based on the users' feelings 2. A Song Trivia app specifically for musicians who want to work on their ear training. They can either guess the key, chords, or type of chords within that song. There are many more, but to put together a team of well-rounded like-minded people to give back to the music community is a milestone I hope to achieve. In the end, it's something I want to pursue because it brings me joy. It is something that makes me smiles and happy at the end of day. To have fun with what I want to pursue keeps my passion of music production and creativity burning bright. To not have fun while doing something you love is like composing a symphony without a melody, painting a canvas without color, or writing a story without passion. In pursuit of a higher education, I hope to use this opportunity to push myself harder creatively and academically. I'm open to learning new things, meeting new people, taking advice, and more importantly, having fun as I go. As I continue on this path, my dedication to doing just that is by refining my skills, embracing the challenges, and turning my creative dreams into a reality.
Gabriella SmithSimpson
Howard UniversityHouston, TX
Since I was young my mom has always been there for me. When I fell on the concrete sidewalk and scraped my knee my mom was always there to help clean up my wound. My mom stayed up late with me to help me finish projects that I had waited till the last second to do. I cannot remember a time when I wasn't there for me. However, I feel that I have not been there enough for her. My mom has gone through a lot medically and I wish I could support her in the same ways she has supported me. My passion for disease research comes from watching my mom struggle with her respiratory disease. My mom has sarcoidosis a respiratory disease that makes her immune system weak and causes sores all around her body. My mom has been to doctor after doctor to find relief, and nothing has helped her. It pains me just to write about how much my mom has struggled to simply feel comfortable in her skin. I have watched my mom return to shorts because she felt too self-conscious of the sores on her legs that come from her disease. I wish to study biology or molecular biology in hopes of finding a career in disease research. I want to study molecular biology to understand the very existence of viruses and other diseases, in hopes I can prevent anyone else to have to experience a life where they cannot have fun or go out in fear of getting sick. I also have a passion for studying Pharmacology mainly because I am interested in redeveloping medicine and the relationship between living organisms and pharmaceutical drugs that affect biochemical functions. Overall I am so excited to start my life outside of high school I know that I will get a chance to be a part of something much bigger than myself. I hope I can grow my career in Medicine and develop or at least come close to developing a cure for sarcoidosis.
Timira Mayo
Southwest Edgecombe HighPINETOPS, NC
The reality of a new life I have come to the realization that significant changes are coming into my life as I transition into becoming a college freshman . When I leave high school I’ll miss it, but I won’t forget who helped me throughout all the struggles, the pain, the times where I just gave up on everything and I couldn’t do it any more. The one person was God. He was there through every step of the way. He never left my side no matter the situation or how hard God never left. My entire life he was the one that I can always depend on and count on no matter what. God is so good and real. I've been through so many things that you won’t even believe it. I'll tell you the story that just made me this way now. I been through suicidal through. As I have let people get to me and I would do things to hurt myself, I would give up on everything because of those people, I would cry every single night in silence because of them. For example there were false narratives about me that weren't true. They were saying how I was promiscuous with guys and slut shaming me like It felt as If I was in the Scarlet Letter. When I came back to school the next day guys would come up and Male Gaze at me while they were talking to me . It’s like the whole school just messed my whole reputation up throughout my whole High School experience . The Guys even wrote repulsive words in their bathroom and I had to get that removed by an administration. This hurt damaged me throughout my whole high school experience . I never really had a good experience at high school . Everybody treated me differently; they still do this today. Once I had prayed to God as I was crying and wounded. He has saved me from everything during these times and he still saves me. I'm a very good human being and smart. I don’t understand how I let everybody get to me like that. Maybe I'm just easy to get through or maybe they're just doing it for fun, but I know one thing God protected me from all of it. I'm going to start a new life and I’m going to become better and more successful than I already am. Those people that have hurt me so much will see how much they can’t hurt me any more. I just thank God for allowing and helping me through all of this as I start a new life the way I want to start by following through with him and spreading his words . I want to go to your college to take all of my actions, skills, my hard working strategies, and much more to bring to your college. I believe that’s what y’all need to see as a person. I love playing sports like basketball, tennis and track. Another reason I want to go to this college is because I want to run track. I want to show everybody what I can do and prove to the world that no matter what people say to you, you can do it If you just believe in yourself and trust yourself. ROMANS 14:22, “The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God, happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves”. Proverbs 28:26, “Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom will be delivered.” I always keep those verses with me and as I start a new life it’s gonna be better and more successful because God is going to be with me every step of the way. Amen


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is May 19, 2024. Winners will be announced on Jun 19, 2024.

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