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Gwendolyn Leon


Bold Points






I have a deep desire to contribute to the development of our planet. I truly want to save our Earth from the environmental impact that humans have caused. Not only do I want to contribute my efforts through research, but by using my voice to communicate how to better humanity to the public. I would be a good candidate as I want to work hard for the greater good and any additional help towards that would allow me to take additional opportunities to not only further my education, but ease my ability to focus on it.


Paramount High

High School
2020 - 2024


  • Desired degree level:

    Doctoral degree program (PhD, MD, JD, etc.)

  • Majors of interest:

    • Ecology, Evolution, Systematics, and Population Biology
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:


    • Dream career goals:

      Public services

      • Volunteering

        American Red Cross — I recruited my fellow high school students to donate blood then during the blood drive I fulfilled the role of checking students in.
        2022 – 2024
      Live Music Lover Scholarship
      Chanting as I've never heard before, finally finding people who cry to the same songs I've cried to in my bedroom, and the rawness of Billie Eilish's voice. Music has been something that keeps me going every day whether I'm walking to class, at home doing laundry, or dealing with the "worst breakup of my life", and to experience it in person is otherworldly, especially when it is Billie. Her performance was incredible and I am beyond grateful she was my first concert. There is nothing I love more than acoustics and a soft voice, and she delivers just that. I cherish the song "I love you", one of her acoustic songs. I prayed that she would perform it, and thank the heavens she did. After performing upbeat songs that we all jumped in unison to, the stadium filled with peace. It was like everyone was allowing themselves to feel the emotion that drew Billie into creating such a masterpiece. It was her sitting on a stool and her brother Finneas playing the guitar. I cannot express enough how I did not know how much hearing my favorite song live would change my perspective on concerts. Concerts truly allow the sharing of the most human quality that we often overlook, vulnerability. While it is not like we in the audience are sharing our life stories, we all have an agreed understanding that a fragment of our hearts lay in such beloved songs. The fact that one human being can use their form of expression to allow others to also express themselves changed my life forever, and due to that, I found and find myself going to concerts quite often. My favorite concert has to be from a London artist, Eloise. My sister and I discovered her music and bonded over it. A mixture of jazz and pop has us dancing and replaying her vocals before the song is even over just to feel it in our souls again. I have deep gratitude for Eloise. She is what brought my sister and I to have a closer connection. We never really bonded over music and would usually sit in silence during car rides, but when Eloise’s music entered the picture that had changed. A “Hey, listen to this song” turned into playing each one of her songs in the car and singing our hearts out to it. She allowed us to experience the human quality of vulnerability, as previously mentioned. We never shared what made us happy, and to be happy together is a vulnerability that I was unaware of to be so necessary to have a proper relationship. With that being said, Eloise had a concert at the Fonda Theater in LA, so of course Jaylin, my sister and now best friend, and I had to go. Eloise hit every note and her band felt the music just as much as we did, adding that depth to the feelings of our minds and bodies. I remember throughout that night, Jaylin and I just looking at each other. Both of us were happy to see our favorite artist live, but even happier to be there with each other, the peak of our vulnerability. Hearing music live is genuinely a supernatural force. For both my first concert and favorite concert, being brought together to be vulnerable with strangers or the people closest to me, is the ultimate gift.
      Dan Leahy Scholarship Fund
      Outspoken, educated, and kind-hearted are all qualities of my speech and debate coach, Ms. Barboza. Barboza is beyond just a teacher I admire, but a role model. She pursued her education by all means by going to every college that offered her a financial opportunity, making no excuse to not be educated and successful. Every day I walk into her classroom and there is a newspaper on her desk. I am always amazed at how educated she is on worldly issues. When I ask her about an issue, she speaks so passionately. Simply hearing Barboza speak makes me want to be passionate just as much. I never realized how important perspective was until she highlighted every perspective of an issue and its importance. With her, no voice goes unheard. She is continuously there for her students. At times when I felt I had nowhere to go when my personal life consumed me, I found myself in her office, where I did not have to ask for her support because she always made it clear that she was ready to support me at any given moment. I felt listened to and understood when all adults looked like figures of authority. I believe that to do something in one's life, one must seek the qualities Barboza has. To contribute to the greatness of humanity one must be outspoken on what must no longer be overlooked, one must seek education to thrive for the sake of themselves and others, and most importantly, one must live with a kind heart as that is the most human aspect one should crave. Ms. Barboza has inspired me to pursue further education as I want to follow her example. I want to be the the best possible version of myself. A version of myself where I take every opportunity to improve myself. I want to contribute to our world by using my voice to share the importance of our issues across the planet. Further education will help me achieve this as it will develop my ability to understand issues such as environmental impact, and then develop solutions which I could then share with the public. At times when I wanted to give up on school as one obstacle led to another, Barboza always knew what to say to make sure I never gave up, whether it was enlightening me on ways I can avoid financial burden or some encouraging words to assure I can do what I dream of. Ever since I entered her classroom, I have been inspired. My motivation to participate in speech and debate started in my sophomore year English course. It required that we write and present a speech on a societal issue. I wanted to report on the importance of reproductive rights in the United States. Unfortunately, this did not go without a fight. My teacher told me, "That is not an issue and will not be an issue", therefore, I could not write about it. This enraged me. As this event occurred before the overturning of Roe v. Wade, my teacher lacked the desire to understand my perspective. My voice was shut down. I wanted to prove him wrong, but just couldn't. That is when I was greeted with the opportunity of speech and debate. I wanted to learn how to be heard as someone so apprehensive. My motivation to participate in speech and debate was my first step in self-improvement. My first step towards never letting my voice be shut down ever again.