Sander Jennings Spread the Love Scholarship

Funded by
Sander Jennings
Learn more about the Donor
1 winner
Application Deadline
Apr 29, 2021
Winners Announced
May 30, 2021
Education Level
High School, Undergraduate

“Love is free, spread it everywhere.”- Sander Jennings

With the rise of social media, we are more connected than ever. And while this increased connectedness gives us an opportunity to come together and support one another, it has also created a platform for people to spread negativity and divisiveness.

Every day, millions of people are ridiculed and belittled because of their identity, beliefs, and looks. And sadly, these events are highly traumatic and have contributed to suicide becoming the second leading cause of death for college-aged youth.

The antidote to this problem is complex, but it starts with increasing the amount of love and acceptance spreading through the world.

The Sander Jennings Spread the Love Scholarship exists to ignite more love and acceptance in our world.

High school and undergraduate students in any field of study are eligible to apply. Applicants will be asked to write a short essay about how their journey with self-love and acceptance has impacted their beliefs, relationships, and aspirations.

Mental Health
Selection Criteria:
Essay Topic

How has your journey with self-love and acceptance impacted your beliefs, relationships, and aspirations?

250–500 words

Winning Application

Jordan Dunigan
Glenoak High SchoolNorth Canton, OH
Upon coming home, I could feel a lump in my throat that urged me to cry. I could hear my parents asking me how the visit went, their faces elated to see my sister and me. It only made me want to cry harder, my throat became tighter, and the tears were already beginning to well in the corners of my eyes. They were boiling, threatening to spill over in front of the people who wanted everything to be okay. I knew that because I wanted it to be okay too. "It went great," I said with a false grin. They smiled back, and we talked for a few minutes. After that, I rushed to my room and sulked for what seemed like hours. The tears seemed extinct up until now and only seemed to flow when I realized that the relationship with my biological mother was worth it. But I wanted it to be worth it. I wanted not to feel as powerless as I did then, knowing she was never going to change. Self-love was a difficult thing to obtain for me from a young age. Due to a toxic relationship with my biological mother, the powerlessness I felt in repairing that relationship left me feeling as though I could accomplish nothing. It took years to regain acceptance in a broken relationship and self-love after that. Only by fostering healthy relationships in those who truly cared for me was I able to begin to love and accept me for who I am rather than someone I could not fix. My self-acceptance journey helped me discover the distinction between relationships and my belief that people shouldn't measure their self-worth through what they cannot do. Instead, people should measure their accomplishments and self-worth through their ability to grow from situations that cannot be solved immediately. I could never wholly fix the relationship between my biological mother and me. For a long time, the thought of this alone defeated me. Only when I was able to break off the relationship over time rather than spending so much time and exhaustion into trying to repair it was I able to understand where my self-worth indeed lay. This journey also inspired me to want the best for other children in similar situations, which led me to choose teaching as my future career. By being an educator, I can teach the youth what self-acceptance and worth mean to each child. Whether it is struggling in content or reporting an abusive family, being a teacher will directly impact a child's life and ideologies for life.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Apr 29, 2021. Winners will be announced on May 30, 2021.

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