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Avery Wren

1015

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Finalist

Bio

Im an honors Microbiology student at the University of Tennessee. I am studying primarily cancer biology and want to go into cancer research full time after I finish school.

Education

The University of Tennessee-Knoxville

Bachelor's degree program
2022 - 2026
  • Majors:
    • Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other
  • Minors:
    • Mathematics and Statistics, Other

Milton High School

High School
2018 - 2022

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Bachelor's degree program

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Wildlife and Wildlands Science and Management
    • Zoology/Animal Biology
    • Natural Resources Conservation and Research
    • Environmental/Natural Resources Management and Policy
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Biotechnology

    • Dream career goals:

      Cancer Researcher

    • Clothing and Footwear Associate

      REI
      2020 – 20222 years
    • Barista

      Cubanos
      2023 – 2023

    Research

    • Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other

      University of Tennessee BCMB department — Lead undergraduate researcher
      2023 – Present

    Arts

    • Milton Theater Company

      Acting
      Anastasia the Musical, Shenendoah the Musical, Suite Surrender, Nora's lost, Chicago the Musical, Carosel the Musical
      2019 – 2022
    • Milton Chorus

      Music
      2019 – 2022

    Future Interests

    Advocacy

    Volunteering

    Philanthropy

    NE1 NE-Dream Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments, all while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I know personally how hard this disease is on people, and I want to use the power of science to ensure others do not have to go through what my family, and millions of others, do every day. I need financial assistance to continue my research and my education, but with help I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of biology research and to achieve my goals.
    Trees for Tuition Scholarship Fund
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments, all while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I know personally how hard this disease is on people, and I want to use the power of science to ensure others do not have to go through what my family, and millions of others, do every day. I need financial assistance to continue my research and my education, but with help I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of biology research and to achieve my goals.
    Minecraft Forever Fan Scholarship
    "Hey Jonah! Shoot the crystal to the Dragon's right!" Boom! "Gracie I'm loosing hearts! Cover me while I heal!" The three of us have been trying to defeat the Ender Dragon the entire summer, all to no avail. But that was gonna change today. We spent the last week acquiring diamond armor and weapons, stocking up on food, and hunting down enough Ender Pearl's to make the portal. I don't think we have ever worked together so well or been this investing in something before. I grew up loving Minecraft, as it allowed me to connect with my siblings. Both of my younger brothers have always shared similar interests with each other. This makes sense, as they are only about a year apart, while I have seven and six year age gaps with them. But when my dad bought an old Xbox from our neighbor's yard sale, everything changed. "Jay, the dragon is almost dead! just hit it one more time!" All the sudden the dragon erupted and exploded. All three of us cheered while our TV played the game's end credits. We've never had any kind of gaming system before, so playing together is an entirely new experience for us. In fact, our Xbox, and our favorite game Minecraft, has brought us closer together than ever. We took it between our dad and moms house, determined to play whoever we got the chance. Now when I see someone playing Minecraft, my heart warms. I remember the game so fondly, and I know my brother's feel the same. To me, the game reminds me of family and the joys to playing together.
    Eden Alaine Memorial Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments, all while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. To make a bad situation worse, my brothers and I have only grown up with one set a grandparents, so we were losing our only grandmother. After she passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I hope that I can use this tragedy for good, and that my contusing work is making my grandmother's spirit proud.
    Veerakasturi and Venkateswarlu Ganapaneni Memorial Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    SigaLa Education Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    William Griggs Memorial Scholarship for Science and Math
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    Beyond The C.L.O.U.D Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    Women in STEM Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    Bright Lights Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    Ratan Lal Mundada Memorial Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    Friends of Ohm Labs Scholarship
    My family received the terminal diagnosis the summer before my senior year of highschool. My grandmother was quite young for this kind of diagnosis, only sixty eight. I almost didn't believe it. Not until after her surgeons cut her open and discovered the tumor on her pancreas spread to almost every single vital organ in her body. The surgeon stitched her up, there was no point in operating. We knew pancreatic cancer was a death sentence, but we ignorantly believed we would get more time. We didn't. I was never very close with my grandmother, which pains me deeply now. I was trying to cram years of life and a relationship in her last moments. All while her body quickly deteriorated before my eyes. After my grandmother passed months later, I knew I needed to do work in the field of cancer research. Everyone’s grandparents die, I'm not special, and almost everyone at least know’s someone who has been affected by cancer. That is what drives me. No family should receive a terminal diagnosis or be told that they have no options. Too many people suffer at the hands of our own dysfunctional cells. I declared a major in microbiology in college and quickly joined a cancer research lab on campus. We are working to better understand gene expression in the non-coding regions of a cancer cell’s RNA coding genes. This work will allow other researchers to create more effective chemotherapy and cancer treatments that attack the genes essential for reproduction in cancerous cell lines. The work is quite intricate, as we need to isolate genes that when removed, will stop a cancerous cell’s reproduction, but not affect the healthy body cells. But despite its tedious nature, my work in this lab fulfills me. Not only have I learned so much and bettered myself as a student, scientist, and researcher, but I know that the work I am doing has the capacity to help families like mine. I plan to pursue a PHD in cancer research and continue the fight for a cure for cancer to honor my grandmother and the millions of people affected by cancer every day. I am seeking financial assistance because my previously single mother has recently gotten married. This will affect my FAFSA pell grant, as I will likely receive little to no aid now that I am technically a part of a dual income household. Additionally, her husband earns a teachers salary and does not contribute to my education. I know I have the capacity to do great things in the field of cancer research, and with financial assistance, I will be able to complete my bachelors degree without taking out excessive loans. I know that with assistance, I have the capacity to help many people and do great things in science.
    Ethel Hayes Destigmatization of Mental Health Scholarship
    I feel my fingernails dig into my palms. Hyper-aware of the way others preserve me in times like this, I try to maintain a 'normal' appearance in public. "Click Click Click Click," the girl next to me typed on her keyboard, taking notes of the lecture. "POP," a guy in the back of the crowded lecture hall popped his gum repeatedly. I've counted 32 times he's done this since the start of this class. I stopped paying attention to the professor's messy writing on the board a long time ago. I usually have to review everything covered in lectures anyway, for this reason. I can never keep a train or thought or remain calm when- "Did you hear that my roommate went out with Damien last night?" "Oh my god no she didn't!" The girls behind me never stop whisper-gossiping. I can't blame them though, calculus is boring. I don't ever try to listen in on their conversation. I just can't seem to help it. I push my earplugs further into my ear canals and flinch at the sting. My ears always get so sore at the end of the day. I have spent my entire life suffering from anxiety and extreme sensory issues. As my father has suffered similar mental health issues, I was diagnosed at 9 and medicated. But throughout my life, It seems that they have only gotten worse. While my sensory issues and anxiety impact me daily, as I struggle to be active socially and remain calm during my classes, especially during tests, the biggest impact is on my self-esteem. I, like others who suffer from mental health issues, hate to be looked at differently from my peers. When people find out that I wear earplugs daily, or have to take heavy doses of medication to function, they tend to look at me with pity or as if I am a freak of nature. Additionally, I am always hyper-aware in social situations, as I am always nervous about 'ruining the vibe' or bringing down the energy of a room. I've found that while taking my medication, breathing excursuses, CBD oil, and other remedies can be helpful. However the biggest help, and arguably the hardest thing to do, is advocating for myself and my needs. My friends care about me, and while I find it embarrassing to ask to turn the TV down during movie night or keep the chatter down while doing my homework, they don't usually mind. They want me to be comfortable and happy. Asking for help is a very hard thing to do, but it is essential when you suffer from mental health issues. It also helps to surround yourself with understanding people who want what's best for you. Without my friends, I would never be able to navigate college and function on my own.
    Mental Health Scholarship for Women
    I feel my fingernails dig into my palms. Hyper-aware of the way others preserve me in times like this, I try to maintain a 'normal' appearance in public. "Click Click Click Click," the girl next to me typed on her keyboard, taking notes of the lecture. "POP," a guy in the back of the crowded lecture hall popped his gum repeatedly. I've counted 32 times he's done this since the start of this class. I stopped paying attention to the professor's messy writing on the board a long time ago. I usually have to review everything covered in lectures anyway, for this reason. I can never keep a train or thought or remain calm when- "Did you hear that my roommate went out with Damien last night?" "Oh my god no she didn't!" The girls behind me never stop whisper-gossiping. I can't blame them though, calculus is boring. I don't ever try to listen in on their conversation. I just can't seem to help it. I push my earplugs further into my ear canals and flinch at the sting. My ears always get so sore at the end of the day. I have spent my entire life suffering from anxiety and extreme sensory issues. As my father has suffered similar mental health issues, I was diagnosed at 9 and medicated. But throughout my life, It seems that they have only gotten worse. While my sensory issues and anxiety impact me daily, as I struggle to be active socially and remain calm during my classes, especially during tests, the biggest impact is on my self-esteem. I, like others who suffer from mental health issues, hate to be looked at differently from my peers. When people find out that I wear earplugs daily, or have to take heavy doses of medication to function, they tend to look at me with pity or as if I am a freak of nature. Additionally, I am always hyper-aware in social situations, as I am always nervous about 'ruining the vibe' or bringing down the energy of a room. I've found that while taking my medication, breathing excursuses, CBD oil, and other remedies can be helpful. However the biggest help, and arguably the hardest thing to do, is advocating for myself and my needs. My friends care about me, and while I find it embarrassing to ask to turn the TV down during movie night or keep the chatter down while doing my homework, they don't usually mind. They want me to be comfortable and happy. Asking for help is a very hard thing to do, but it is essential when you suffer from mental health issues. It also helps to surround yourself with understanding people who want what's best for you. Without my friends, I would never be able to navigate college and function on my own.
    RonranGlee Literary Scholarship
    "J’écrivais tout à l’heure à Cosette. Elle trouvera ma lettre. C’est à elle que je lègue les deux chandeliers qui sont sur la cheminée. Ils sont en argent ; mais pour moi ils sont en or, ils sont en diamant ; ils changent les chandelles qu’on y met, en cierges. Je ne sais pas si celui qui me les a donnés est content de moi là-haut. J’ai fait ce que j’ai pu. Mes enfants, vous n’oublierez pas que je suis un pauvre, vous me ferez enterrer dans le premier coin de terre venu sous une pierre pour marquer l’endroit. C’est là ma volonté." -Victor Hugo, Les Misérables "I was writing to Cosette a while ago. She will find my letter. I bequeath to her the two candlesticks which stand on the chimney. They are of silver, but to me they are gold, they are diamonds; they change candles which are placed in them into wax-tapers. I have done what I could.I do not know whether the person who gave them to me is pleased with me yonder on high. I have done what I could. My children, you will not forget that I am a poor man, you will have me buried in the first plot of earth that you find, under a stone to mark the spot. This is my wish." -Victor Hugo, Les Misérables While this novel is not a piece of ancient literature or philosophy, It is my favorite book as it holds true to its themes and provides an insight into 19th century France. I provided the section of this passage in French and English, as I believe the original language of this passage holds a deeper meaning than the translated version. As a French speaker, I believe that there are many words in French that cannot be fully encapsulated by English, and thus act as a sort of mistranslation. This is true for most languages. As every language possesses its unique elements and deep meanings within each word. This passage exemplifies Jean Valjean's character arc and connects his actions back to the priest he met at the beginning of the novel while exploring deep meaning in the French language. This passage occurs at the end of the novel and encapsulates Jean Valjean's last last words to his daughter, Cosette, and her husband. Examining the English version of this text, Jean Valjean speaks about the silver candlesticks on top of his chimney-piece. These candlesticks were given to him by the priest he met at the very beginning of the novel after Jean Valjean had left jail. This man changed Jean Valjean's trajectory of his life, as the priest taught him to live as God did, selflessly, and humble. After their interaction, Jean Valjean swore to devote his life to the service of others and to God. The candlesticks remain present throughout the novel and symbolize God and the priest. Whenever Jean Valjean strays from his path of righteousness, the presence of these candlesticks help him to regain sight of his values. Jean Valjean states, "They are of silver, but to me they are gold, they are diamonds; they change candles which are placed in them into wax-tapers," (Victor Hugo). Jean Valjean views these candlesticks as worth much more than their monetary value, as they represent to him his divine lessons. Additionally, Jean Valjean compares himself to the wax that the candle's melt, as he allows the candle sticks to change him for the better. The parallels between Jean Valjean and the priest continue, as Jean Valjean revealed his desire to be buried as a poor man, with a blank headstone. This is how the priest chose to be buried earlier in the novel, and Jean Valjean wants to have his body treated similarly. This perpetuates the idea that Jean Valjean has chosen to forgo materialism, instead choosing to donate his wealth to his children and the poor. This continues the Christian themes of this novel, as Jean Valjean’s choice emulates Jesus’s life, as he chose to exist humbly and as a common man. Jean Valjean's choice to waive materialistic wealth even in death completes his arc to live selflessly, and allows him to transition into death in a similar manner. Much of the language used by Victor Hugo has deep origins in the Ancient French language, and thus its meaning can be broken down further when analyzed in French. In the English translation of this passage, the words "Have me buried in the first plot of Earth you find" are used. However in the original text, Hugo uses "vous me ferez enterrer dans le premier coin de terre venu," (Victor Hugo). The French sentence is written in a passive voice, translating directly to "The first corner of land that finds you". This implies that Jean Valjean wants his grave cast off to the side in a corner, which is less central than the English text implies. Additionally, because the sentence is in passive voice, it suggests that the piece of land that should contain Jean Valjean's body will find the gravediggers. In Jean Valjean's description of the candlesticks, he refers to them as silver or "en argent" in the French translation. The word argent is derived from the latin word argentum, which means 'white metal' or 'silver'. During this time period, it was difficult to distinguish old silver from sable, an invaluable metal, due silver’s tendency to tarnish. So silver was considered of significantly less value when compared to other metals. This deepens our understanding of Jean Valjean's meaning when Hugo writes "They are of silver, but to me they are gold, they are diamonds," (Victor Hugo). While we now often associate silver and gold together as both being valuable, that was not the case in the French 19th century.