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Leila Clinton

1055

Bold Points

1x

Finalist

Bio

I aspire to be a mechanical engineer and change the world one solution at at time.

Education

Dalton School

High School
2020 - 2024

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Bachelor's degree program

  • Majors of interest:

    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Engineering-Related Technologies/Technicians
    • Computer Science
    • Engineering Mechanics
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Mechanical or Industrial Engineering

    • Dream career goals:

      Arts

      • Dance Theatre Workshop

        Dance
        Spring 2024
        2023 – Present
      • Wind Ensemble

        Music
        2020 – Present

      Public services

      • Volunteering

        Girl Scouts of America — Girl Scout
        2010 – Present

      Future Interests

      Volunteering

      Philanthropy

      Morgan Levine Dolan Community Service Scholarship
      This scholarship will help me pursue my future career goals of becoming a Mechanical Engineer. College is expensive and during my college search the amount to attend has at times been discouraging. In spite of the price tag, I am determined to pursue my goals of becoming an engineer. I have been involved in robotics since the third grade and I could not imagine my career without some form of mechanical engineering and/or robotics. Even though most programs for mechanical engineers does not include lots of women, i am determined to be the change the field needs to see. I am inspired by the innovation and emerging technology which seems to change daily. So many college students have been coming up with ideas and things that will literally change the world. I cannot wait to be part of that change. My ultimate dream is to attend Georgia Institute of Technology in Georgia and getting this scholarship would help make that dream a reality. I have worked so hard in high school to maintain good grades while taking challenging courses. I have been committed to putting my academics at the forefront while balancing robotics, dance, community service and local community organizations. I am proud of the work that I have put in and hope that it helps me reach my ultimate goal and that is to make college more affordable for me. For the last year I have volunteered at a local public school providing a robotics afterschool program that my team and I curated. It was exciting to see the faces of the children light up when we taught them a new concept. In addiiton to that, I serve as the math team coach for the middle school students of my school. I have helped them advance to state finals. This past summer I served as a summer intern/volunteer for a local Tech company in Queens, New York. Part of my responsibility was to visit four different summer camps and teach the kids robotics, drones and coding. It was likely one of the best experiences i have had. I was able to serve local camps in my community. The best thing was for the kids who looked like me to see that they too can do robotics and/or STEM careers. As my senior year comes to an end, I continue to serve as Girl Scout at the ambassador level and organization that I have been a part of for the past 12 years. When time permits I continue to attend community service events which include, senior citizen day, earth day and other local events which help make my community better. In 2018 I fractured my ankle and required surgery leaving me witha plate and screws in my body. So all thoughts of becoming an Olympic athlete quickly ended. However, since junior year, my school had auditions for the dance theatre workshop and I got the courage to audition. In spire of my fears, I was selected for a dance piece and now I serve as a choreographer for this years production. While not athletic, dance is definitely like a sport and one which takes practice and determination. I am proud of how far I have come and am excited to see my production come to light. In closing, this scholarship would be life changing. It would help me move one step closer to my dreams. I know if awarded I will succeed and give back to my community when I am done as I know that success is measured by who you can reach back and lift up.
      New Kids Can Scholarship
      When I started high school I was the "new kid" as 98% of my grade had been friends and students since first grade. Talk about nervous. Coupled with the fact that I started high school during a global pandemic was another layer of emotions that I had no factored in. So one of the most eagerly awaited moments of my life was started at home in a box over zoom. How was i going to make friends and build relationships with others and fit into the school community? That was the million dollar question that I posed myself everyday as I logged into my classes. That 8 months on zoom really changed my life in ways I never expected. I was forced to pivot to challenge myself to be more open to forming friendships based on limited interactions and communications. During that time I focused more on learning things about my peers and really getting to know one another albiet on zoom. In that short time, I made some really great friends that I believe will be in my adult life journey. We shared so many stories and had real discussions about how the pandemic was making us feel. The pandemic was not only a health crisis but also a social, mental and financial crisis for so many. I learned so much about others and related to the various struggles and concerns that my classmates voiced. My future goals before the pandemic was to become a mechanical engineer with the hopes of creating better machinery and functions through the use of robotics. I was inspired after my experience to pursue this field even more. I am committed to creating new machinery and tools to make communication even better throughout the world. Thinkiing about the new innovative ideas and systems which could make remote learning better while also helping bridging the gap between the lack of human touch and interaction. I had the unique experience that I actually was the "new kid" twice. Once I started my sophmore year in person I got to meet alot of other students in my grade who I did not have any classes with and did not have reason to interact with. That is why I always say my sophmore year was my freshman year extended and it was scary and exciting all at the same time. During that time, while I technically was not a new kid, I definitely had to catch my bearings and meet new people who today are part of my community.
      Cat Zingano Overcoming Loss Scholarship
      Overcoming loss has been a difficult road for me and my family. In the last 7 years we have suffered many losses. In 2016 one of my biggest cheerleaders died and that was my grandmother Sarah Clinton she was one of the best people I have ever known. She would always support me in anything I did and was happy to help when asked. The saddest part about losing her was she moved away to an assisted living place several hours away months before she passed. So my last memory of her is Thanksgiving of 2015. I often wish we had a chance at one more conversation. Fast forward to covid-19 which was a serious time for so many people especially in New York City. During the first 3 weeks of the lock down my aunt was found dead in her apartment. Unfortunately, we could not have a funeral or even an autopsy to see what caused her death. She was sent to the crematory and her ashes remained in a box for over one year before we could give her a proper burial. This made me not only sad, but it gave me the determination to do better and be better as time went on. You see my aunt Stephanie dealt with so many addictions in her life. In the 1980s she was caught in the New York crack epidemic and went to rehab for almost 8 months and declared clean. She remained clean for over 30 years. She also fought alcohol addiction and up until 2016 was sober and clean for a long time. However, depression and the loss of her mom sent her down a spirally path and she began to drink again. We believe that alcohol is likely what killed her but we will never know. I have great memories of my aunt but what I remember the most is her fighting spirit of always trying again even when she fell. She never gave up even up until when she died. I know she wanted to live but sometime life happens and we get distracted by the noise. Her death helped me realize that i have to keep my eye on the prize even when I face weak moments in my life. That so long as I am fortunate to wake up another day, the fight to win remains in me.
      Ambition Scholarship
      My future dreams is to becoming a mechanical engineer. I hope to be a world changer and someone who can impart great things to the world. Thus far, I have been fortunate that my educational career has been great and hopefully has set me in the best direction. In addition to that I have worked really hard at exposing myself with experiences that have helped me decide that mechanical engineering is what I want to do as my career. This summer I had an opportunity to work for a local tech company and worked at 4 different campsites teaching students about coding, robitics, drones and python. It was one of the best jobs ever. It was so rewarding to work in my own community and showing kids who looked like me that it was possible to excel in the STEM field. In addition to working over the summer, I also have curated an after school program for a local elementary school during my junior year and was happy to get informed that they would like me and my classmates to return in the fall. During the last 8 years of being involved in robotics, one thing that is evident is there are not that many women of color who are interested in that field. At times, I feel like the reason is there are not that many women who are visable to others so it makes it hard for someone to get involved. I want to change that narrative. I want young girls to see me and be inspired by what I know and how I can teach them about something that can be life changing. As I start my college application process I can only pray that all of my hard work and dedication to my grades, classes, community service and school activties help me in my dream of attending a great college. My mom always reminds me of two things. 1. If not you then who and 2. delay is not a denial. I think of those two things often when I reach for what may seem to be the stars or at times when I feel disappointed about not achieving a goal. I know that if I don't try and put in the effort, it would never be me and I also know that something delayed does not mean it is denied forever. In the next few months, I think it will be my turn to get the answers and the approval I have worked so hard to get.
      Henry Bynum, Jr. Memorial Scholarship
      I have overcome adversity in many ways. As an African American woman I am faced with many challenges daily. Sometimes the issues are just because I am living in my own skin. For me, that became all to relevant right before freshman year in high school. While it was the pandemic, it also was the time of the Black Lives Matter movement after the murder of George Floyd. While the movement and marches gained national attention, locally, it caused a stir and a movement in the high school sector. Especially where I went to school. I attend a PWI wherein there is less than 3% of students of color. Here I was about to start a new institution with the race relations nationwide at an all time high. I was nervous and afraid about what the next four years were going to be like and if I was going to fit in with this group of students. My mother, in her infinite wisdom reminded me that I had to allow the experience to play out before I turned my back on people I had not even met before. She was right, while the first few months in school were strange I allowed myself to experience people for who they were. I also allowed people in as I realized that although I lived in the greatest city in the world. there were people who actually never had any friendships with an African American woman. Four years later and I can say that overall my experience has been good. I have been able to make friends who got to see me for who I was and not the color of my skin. I continued to break the barriers and get back to the basic lessons I learned in pre-school and make friends and build relationships based on being just a kind human being. I hope as I mature and grow in this world, that i can remind everyone around me that sometimes understanding differences about each other starts with kindness. I hope to help my community in the future by leading by the example that I have set. This past week, I became a peer leader and I traveled with my classmates to a retreat for a bonding experiences. I was surprised and honored to hear from my peers how much they appreciated me and liked me for the values that I have shown throughout our high school experience. Some of the comments were from people who had not really had a chance to get to know me during our prior school years. This experience just gave me the inspiration that I needed to move with kindness and to lead by example as I move forward. I hope a change in me will inspire others.
      Liv For The Future Scholarship
      Leadership has always been at the forefront of who I am as a person. More recently, my desires to pursue leadership roles has increased since Covid19. In September 2020 I started a new high school with hopes of meeting new people and community. Like many, I started my high school time over zoom and at home. For nearly one year, I was isolated and restricted in so much that once we started school in person I was motivated to take lead wherever I could. With leadership comes great responsibility. Since I was on my schools robotics team I took the initiative to lead the task of our statewide competition. Although I was new to the school, I had more than 5 years in robotics experience so I was able to assist my team and take a leadership role in that aspect. Aside from taking a leadership in school, I also participated in other out of school programs which enabled me to take leadership roles as well. During my entire junior year in high school I along with 3 other classmates curated an afterschool program which we were able to provide at a local public school. It was and continues to be one of the best things I have done during my high school years. This role allowed me the opportunity to create a lesson plan and learning blocks for the students. The teacher at the program allowed us the freedom to design the course as we saw fit. It was a challenge to create a lesson plan about robotics, coding and html which could be complex but to a level that 4th graders could understand. I am please that we worked the entire year and have been asked to return for year 2 this upcoming school year. I anticipate that my senior year will be great and I will have a change to have other leadership opportunities before I embark on my college journey. Wherever I do attend I anicipate also continuing my journey in leadership and community service. My mother always tells me "if not you then who", which has been my life long motto. I know that I am capable and destined to do great things I just need to remain focused on what is in front of me and what life has to offer. Leadership is important but imparting and supporting your community is equally important and part of my overall goal in life.
      Lyndsey Scott Coding+ Scholarship
      An aspect of intersection between my computer science and non-computer science lives have always been the use of computer science to simplify life. From algorithms being able to complete tasks in mere seconds, to artificial intelligence being able to compile data extremely quickly, the use of computer science with human action instead of replacing it has always been something I've been curious about and is something that I've wanted to look into. In my personal life, I always try to help others as best as I can and I believe computer science would allow me to take this passion to the next level. My computer science goals are to develope software that will simplify life in other ways. I also want to bridge the gap between my love for robotics and engineering while also intersecting it with computer science and things needed for the next century and beyond. My non-computer science goals are varied and cover such a large spectrum. While I love computer science, engineering and math I also have a passion for art, music and dance. It would be great to find a way to that could include all of my interest into one project or career. I know I can incorporate my love of drawing into computer science but to find a way to include music and dance would really be a game changer for the world I think. I often think about ways I can make my bass clarinet play differently or even if I could create a product that could play it robotically would be a great intersection of all of my worlds into one. I have started in my quest to build a computer and hope that as my college career and learning experience will help me make the improvements necessary to make my dreams a reality by the time I graduate. I often think of the start of Microsoft and Apple and how small ideas became some of the world most life changing inventions. i can only hope that the next small idea is mine and it is one that will equally change the world we live in. I continue to believe and hope that as I navigate the space and learn more that the possibilities for me are endless and the creations and projects I encounter will be ones which will not only be awe inspiring but one which will benefit generations to come,
      Barbara J. DeVaney Memorial Scholarship Fund
      My name is Leila and I am from New York. I live with my single mom and this money would help with my college education and ensure that I have a better life. I am a hard worker and an avid student. I worked really hard in elementary school which afforded me the opportunity to attend such a prestigious school. I am a woman of color who is hopeful to pursue a career in engineering.I would be the first in my family to pursue such a career. I am very fortunate to have be in the position to even apply to college at this point. My mom has raised me on her own and has had to struggle to now only provide for me but also recover as a victim of domestic violence. My Mom is my hero as during the time that she suffered her abuse she ensured that my life and goals were not interrupted. She continued to press on even when I knew it was the hardest time of her life. I appreciate her for all that she sacrificed for me during that time. Without her support and guidance I do not know where I would be. This money would lift the burden on student loans and her obligation during my time in college. I know she wants the best for me, however, I do know that just based on the cost of living especially in New York even with the best of jobs things can be difficult. I am motivated, dedicated and a well rounded individual. I play the bass clarinet, I am interested in robotics, coding, gaming and music. In my spare time I volunteer and help younger kids gets involved in the STEM space. I also work at an after school program where I teach coding, html and robotics to 4th grade students. This money would enable me to pursue my dream of obtaining a degree in engineering and help alleviate the financial load on my Mom. If chosen, I would be eternally grateful and would honor the scholarship by continuing to give back to less fortunate in an effort to ensure my community is better because of my contribution. My Mom tends to say that I am a unicorn because of all of things that I do and am involved in. I want to be able to achieve my dreams and goals and this scholarship would go a long way to ensure that. Thank you
      Harriett Russell Carr Memorial Scholarship
      I exemplify a spirit of excellence by reminding myself that I am enough. My Mom has always told me "If not you, then who" as her answer to any goal that I would like to achieve. She has tought me that excellence is something that you work on everyday and in every aspect of who you are. Everyday, I try and be the best version of myself while also remembering to impart great things upon my community. At 17 years of age, I stand out in my community because I play the bass clarinet, I am interested in gaming, robotics, drones and coding. This summer was one of the best experiences ever as I was able to teach at 4 local camps in my neighborhood showing young girls who looked like me that they could pursue a love of engineering, math/science. I have been fortunate that I have volunteered through my school, church and outside organizations. With that I have been able to teach kids in Ghana about robotics, start and implement a robotics after school program at a low performing public school and I continue to offer my services to my local community center in an effore to get kids interested in robotics. Everyday, I continue to show up not only for myself but for others in my community. One of the best things has been partnering with local elected officials and sharing with them my ideas on implementing a curriculum in schools which would expose younger students to robotics and STEM earlier. In addition to working at various camps this summer, I also donated a portion of my salary in an effort to allow the camp to sponsor a deserving child to attend camp for free. That was likely the highlight of my summer knowing that my donation helped a child attend camp and learn about drones, robotics, html and much more. I look forward to my senior year in high school where I already will continue the after school program which was started last year and also be a peer leader for those younger than myself. Being a role model and leader for my community is very important to me and it is something that brings me great pride and joy. I have always been taught about community and the tribe in which gathers to help bring me to the place that I stand today. For them I am greatful as I know that I owe such gratitude and love to everyone who has shown up for me throughout the years. I am eager and excited to continue to show up not only for my community but also for the world beyond as I embark on the college journey. I hope to continue my work with community members in an effort to bring robotics and STEM to younger kids in my community.
      Dounya Discala Scholarship
      I know that my graduating year everyone will have a covid story and how they demonstrated tenacity during those times. Which in all fairness it is likely true for everyone who lived and made it to the other side of this deadly disease. However, I learned tenacity and perseverance before covid-19. In 2018 during one of the most important times academically i suffered a major injury which forced me to miss nearly 3 months from school. I fractured my ankle and required surgery to repair it. Not only was the process painful but I continue to have screws and a plate in my body. On the surface this seems pretty routine and not a challege which a middle school student would mind. Three months out of school to anyone might sound like a vacation but for me it was devastating. You see prior to that accident, I had my sights on a particular high school however one of the disqualifications for consideration is having more than 7 absenses. While my principal ensured me that she would be able to complete a waiver, I was nervous that I would be overlooked and all of the hard work I put in would be overshadowed by my injury. I worked extra hard from home to ensure that I completed all of the classwork and test that was required so that I could maintain my overall GPA and class standing. For weeks I cried that my high school dreams were all but shattered. In addition to that I was unable to attend any review courses for the entrance exam as I had a full leg cast for more than 2 months. (This was of course prior to zoom and covid which if this happened today my options would have been greater) My Mom continued to pour into me that I would get to my dream school and that all was not lost because of this set back. I truly did not believe her and just knew that I would not be attending the school I believed suited me for high school. Every day I continued to work hard and hoped that administrators and the admissions team would see that I deserved a spot at that school. Unfortunately, I was not accepted at what I thought was my dream school as my Principal did not complete the waiver as she promised. I was crushed and felt that my dream school was not within reach. However, as life would happen I landed in the perfect high school that had everything I ever dreamed of. I was able to interview and explain my absense and how I worked hard to ensure that my grades did not suffer albiet my circumstance. I learned so much from that experience. For one hard work does pay off even if it is not in the way you first imagined. Secondly, I learned that even when faced with challenges I am able to truly work things out for my good.
      William Griggs Memorial Scholarship for Science and Math
      My name is Leila and I live in Queens, New York. I am a Girl Scout, I play the bass clarinet, I am an avid gamer, I love robotics and computer science. I aspire to become a mechanical engineer with a minor in computer science. I have been interested in math/science my entire life. From 5th - 8th grade I participated in The Science Alliance Program at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. For three years I traveled to the museum where I had indepth classes on various science concepts and had the opportunity to work alongside various scientist affiliated with the museum. That was the best 3 years of my life. Every Friday from 4-7pm, a group of like minded middle schoolers gathered at the museum to learn more about the environment, the earth and the world at large through science. I learned and met with so many who have contributed to the advancement of math/science it was more than I could ever imagine. Those three years really helped me focus on what my future plans looked like. I plan to become a mechanical engineer and use the skills learned to hopefully make things more efficient for every day uses. I also hope that I can inspire others to pursue a career in that field as well. Engineering is highly math centered and can seem challenging at times, however it is a challenge that I thrive for and hope to develop concepts and ideas that will make the field more appealing to those who may not have a strong mathematical background. I plan to contribute as much as possible to the field of math/science. It is my goal to learn and perfect my craft so that i can be innovative and creative in ways that will be beneficial to the world around us. Believe it or not so much of what we do in everyday life is dependant upon math and science. From turning on your television to using your phone all is dependent upon mathematical equations and/or science or technology to make it better or even just to make it work. I know given the opportunity to study and learn in college, the possibilities for me are endless and the result will also mean a better world for many. The world of math/science changes and progresses daily and I hope to add my own contribution to a better future.
      Scholarship Institute’s Annual Women’s Leadership Scholarship
      Leadership has always been at the forefront of who I am as a person. More recently, my desires to pursue leadership roles has increased since Covid19. In September 2020 I started a new high school with hopes of meeting new people and community. Like many, I started my high school time over zoom and at home. For nearly one year, I was isolated and restricted in so much that once we started school in person I was motivated to take lead wherever I could. With leadership comes great responsibility. Since I was on my schools robotics team I took the initiative to lead the task of our statewide competition. Although I was new to the school, I had more than 5 years in competing and knew the judging process and requirements very well. I stepped up to the challenge of leading my team that season and through my leadership we won several awards due to our submissions. In addition for leading in that manner, I also offered my assistance and help to all new members who did not have any robotics experience or knowledge. I offered to stay at school late and mentor others on my free tiime. I dedicated more than the required 40 hours to the team by leading build sessions and competition strategy workshops. For the last 3 years that has been my role on the team. I believe I have demonstrated good leadership skills as this past year I dislocated my shoulder and my team members and mentees all rallied behind me to assist me in my time of need. It was great that they not only appreciated what I had taught them but they in turn showed me how much they appreciaed me and my dedication to the team. Right when I thought there was no hope for our season, all of the lessons, information and things I showed them were executed wll during competition. Even better, was my teams encouragement of me during the competition when my level of involvement was limited due to my injury. This experience really taught me a lesson about being a leader and understanding that it is important to lead not only by example but with grace and humility. That even as teenagers we understand how those actions affect the outcome. I hope to continue to work on my leadership skills as I grow in my educational career. I want to be someone that can not only lead, but someone who can teach and inspire others to tap into their own greatness. A good leader is only as good as those they inspire.
      Elevate Women in Technology Scholarship
      Ever since I was little, I have always been fascinated about the power of computers. As I've grown up, I've seen these devices get smaller and smaller yet are still able to gain more power. From it's most obvious uses for things like social media and emailing to its ability to keep an intense record of things in case of an emergency or a disaster, computers have always been intriguing. With their ability to constantly evolve, it has always amazed me at how computers have been able to simplify methods of communication for people all across the world. Computers give the ability for anybody to be in any place at any time, as allow people to see asepcts of their world that they wouldn't be able to witness as easily. This not only gives people the chances to learn about different environments, but gives people the resources to interact with these environments and can give some the inspiration to try and help. From it's donating money to travelling to different states or countries, computers have always carried the ability to reach human emotions in a way which has always astounded me. I cannot wait to enter colllege and learn more about the abilities of technology and how I can maybe contribute to changes that will make the world a better place. I am interested in mechanical engineering and computer science, so I am sure my career path will afford me the opportunity to find ways to make our computers better, faster and safer for everyday use.
      Rev. and Mrs. E B Dunbar Scholarship
      I am from a single parent household where my mother has sacrificed so much for my educational career. I was fortunate enough to attend a great school in my state for elementary school not because my mother could afford it but it was only because she prioritized my education above anything else. Right before I was to start 1st grade, my mother was laid off of work and we were forced to look for alternate housing. Without even blinking an eye, my Mom rented a room where we stayed for 10 months until she could find employment and a better apartment for us to live. While some would not believe it, my Mom slept on an air mattress for 10 months while I had a toddler bed. Looking back at pictures I could imagine how uncomfortable she must have been but she did not complain. Fast forward to middle school where it was my desire to attend a high school that would have the resources that I could only dream about. I want to be a mechanical engineer and my desire is ot work closely with robots and to design things that will help the world in the future. My Mom did all that she could so I could attend my current high school. While I am fortunate to be at the school I am today, my Mom reminded me how important it was to enusre that I give back to my community. That being said, i have volunteered my time to a school in Ghana during a mission trip which was one of the best experiences ever. For the last 2 years, my fellow students and myself have volunteered at a local public school providing after school classes in robotics and coding. It has been such a rewarding experience. In fact, this summer I again considered my community first and worked for a not-for-profit and donated a portion of my salary to enable a student to attend coding/robotics camp for free. While a small token it meant so much to me to see the faces of the students who would otherwise not be able to attend if not for my donation. I am committed to reaching back to my community as a whole and ensuring that there will more children interested in STEM and beyond. Sometimes just seeing someone who looks like you is the motivation needed to reach for the stars. I hope to be the star in the sky that young adults look to reach.
      David Foster Memorial Scholarship
      Entering high school was a very scary and different since I entered during the covid-19 and the process was online. Here I was entering a new school, excited to meet new friends to only be stuck in my room on my computer trying to connect with unfamiliar faces. In comes my high school English teacher who has by far been the best teacher I have had and experienced in my short educational career. She has literally opened my eyes and changed how I approach life with just a few words and suggestions during my high school tenor. Recently, I was tasked with writing an English paper and my topic was how Christianity affected minorities in ways that some could see as detrimental to the civil rights movement. After spending several hours and countless days of research and writing, I came to a point of my paper that I had no clear conclusion. I struggled with the final answer and after meeting with my English teacher she made me realize that sometimes there is no real final answer. That it was okay to move in a space where you have done all you can do and gathered all of the facts, information and direction to ultimately not have an answer. She reminded me that in life too sometimes has no final answer. Something that I truly never thought about but as she said it made complete sense. Her words truly changed the way I viewed so many things and made me realize that everything does not have an answer. But more importantly it is okay if there is no answer. As the journey of getting to that point include lessons, knowledge and experiences that will change you for the better at times. After that paper and discussion, it opened up my eyes to many situations that I faced while in school. Prior to that discussion I sometimes was so preoccupied with the answer that I was not focused on the journey and the lessons I was learning along the way. Everything is not always clear and there is not always a right or wrong, but the road traveled in pursuit of the answer matters just as much if not more. I know that long after I graduate and I embark on my next journey i will forever remember her words and the valuable lesson she taught me about life. For that I am forever grateful.
      Hearts on Sleeves, Minds in College Scholarship
      Veganism is a very important diet which I have considered in the past. A diet based on plants, vegetables, grains, fruits and nuts is important for our future and truly our environment. While I am not vegan at this time, it is something that I would consider in the future. It is clear with the state of our environment and carbon footprint that a diet based on plants and vegetables is more sustainable for our future. The explotation of animals is terrible and is a practice that must stop. There have been times in my life where I stopped eating meat and maintained a vegetarian diet for a period of time. While I do not eat meat often I believe that given the opportunity to learn more about veganism and the food options it may be a diet that I wish to consider in the future. I do believe that in the future there will be a shift in society wherein more people will practice veganism. Whether it be for health reasons, relgious reasons or those associated with the prevention of animal cruelty, the tide of change is on the horizon, as we see companies starting to market more vegan options. As with anything as the demand increases awareness to the masses will also. While I am only a senior in high school I see the information and changes starting even at the school level. Today, in my high school there are many more options available for those students who have dietary preferences. Compared to just 5 years ago when I was in middle school the options for vegans was not available. The changes that I am seeing is great and I know coupled with further education and information the numbers will change as to the amount of people who follow a vegan diet. I definitely open to learning more about veganism and how it can improve my overall health and life. Even at the age of 17 longevity and preserving my healthiness is important to me. I am always interested in learning more about what I can do to follow a healthy lifestyle and diet as I grow. Being healthy is very important to me and I believe that a diet which is filled with plants, vegetable and fruits would overall be better for my body and overall growth. The impact of veganism will be long lasting as we move forward.
      Aspiring Musician Scholarship
      Since 2nd grade I was introduced to music while in school. It likely was the best thing that ever happened to me during that time. Every week for one hour I was able to learn and play the clarinet. I was fascinated by the sheet music and eager to learn how to read music and play the clarinet. I am happy to say that from that point on I have played the clarinet and enjoyed every minute of it. Between the grades of 2nd - 8th grade, I played one hour a week in school and practiced at home religiously. We played 3 concerts a year and it was my time to showcase all that I learned. Fastforward to high school and I joined my school's wind ensemble and I continue to play the clarinet, but now as a class which meets 2 times a week. In fact, I was given the opportunity to play the bass clarinet which has been such a joy. If you would have told me in 2nd grade that I would stil be playing the clarinet today I would have thought you were making up a story. Music has become such an important part of my life and how I view the world. In high school participating in music helped me socially and also mentally as the time playing the bass clarinet gives me the opportunity to just to be in the sounds. As my senior year begins, my schedule for the 1st time since 2nd grade may not include music based on the requirements, However, knowing how important music is to me, my professor has offered me the opportunity to still play the bass clarinet and learn the music for this year so that I can still participate in the school concerts. To say that i am thankful is an understatement as a world without music just is not a world that engages ones soul. I have learned through the years that one thing is universal to everyone and that is sound and music. Whenever I play the clarinet, no matter the age, color, orientation or person I am able to connect with others just based on how the sounds makes you feel. Music has definitely been the great equalizer in my life and has played such an important role in my academic career. I know that all of the music lessons and classes not only made me a better student but also helped me connect better with others.
      Johnson Dale Women's Empowerment Scholarship
      Giving back has been one of the best feelings yet. Since kindergarten I have been involved in community service activities such as Girl Scouts and my local church. Through my participation, I learned about the importance of giving back to others. My Mom belongs to The National Association of University Women and as part of the organization yearly efforts they award scholarships to high school seniors. In 2018 I asked my Mom if I could donate money to allow an additional student to get a scholarship. She agreed and I donated $750 of my saved money and my Mom matched my donation. That year I was able to give a deserving student $1500 and it was named after me, It was one of the best days as I was proud to contribute to the success of another student. Since that day, I have been trying to find ways to continue my philanthropic efforts even if it isn't always with as much money as in 2018. In fact, in 2019 I visited Chorkor, Ghana where I volunteered at a school and provided training and a class on robotics. I even brought along various parts of a robot and donated them to the school so the children would be able to use them. While a student at my high school, I have also raised money along with my fellow classmates to assist younger children in need. This summer, I donated back 15% of my working hours to a not-for-profit which enabled them to sponsor 3 children for free for summer camp. It felt good to know that my contribution helped kids enjoy the summer when they otherwise would not be able to afford to attend. I am confident that I will continue my efforts towards philanthropy and give back to my community in any way possible. While my efforts are small in nature at this time, I anticipate that once I complete my college degree and earn more money my level of giving will also increase. Since I am pursuing an engineering major I am interested in showing young women that there is a career path for them in this field. I hope to return to Africa in the future to give back again as well as giving back to my local community where the number of young girls interested in STEM is low. I hope to provide scholarships in the future that I can fully fund and provide on a yearly basis. My mission is to continue to be routed in service to others as that is what ensures that this world becomes a better place. I am dedicated to the mission of giving back no matter how small as if one person is changed or affected in a positive way then my mission would be accomplished.
      E.R.I.C.A. Scholarship
      I love robotics. As a woman who is entering the field, I see the possibilities and opportunities are endless. In a perfect world, I would love to see more women who look like me in this field. The mere fact that robotics allows you to create things and also use critical thinking has been an amazing experience. While in third grade my Mom enrolled me in a local robotics league thinking it would be something I would enjoy. The first year I must admit it was basic lego concepts and building. It was not until 5th grade that I was introduced to actual robotics kits and builds. I found a place where I could be creative and use my love of math at the same time. By 5th grade I was hooked. I was determined to work hard and go to the local competitions with my teammates. I was not bothered that the team meet on Saturdays and included students from all boroughs of New York. From 3rd to 8th grade Forest Hills Robotics League was a place I called home. When I got accepted to my high school I had to make the hard choice and join my school team. While I missed my former teammates I am fortunate that they remain one of the best teams in New York and I compete against them every year. Even with that it is still robotics love and respect. I have been able to truly be in a space that I love and I feel that I have grown. The last thing that is left is for me to actually attend Worlds in Texas which has not happened for my school team but I am hopeful that this year will be my year to go. I hope to be an inspiration to other girls to pursue opportunities in robotics. It has been one of the best things I have been exposed to in my life. As an African American woman there are challenges in this field that I hope will change as time goes on. I must admit that at times I can get discouraged when I look around at competitions and other schools and see very few women but even fewer African American women or men who are participating in the field. I firmly believe that early access to the program and materials is key to getting my community engaged in robotics. I was fortunate that my mother introduced me to the field while in 3rd grade. I am forever grateful that she decided to let me try robotics to see if it was something that I would enjoy. She was right it has been the best part of the last 9 going on 10 years. With the exception of Covid I have not missed a tournament or season. In fact in 7th grade I fractured my ankle and I still participated and joined my team with crutches and all. It was an experience that I will never forget and just showed my dedication and love for this field. I hope to pursue my love of robotics in the future and to be an inspiration for others.
      Richard P. Mullen Memorial Scholarship
      My name is Leila Clinton and I live in Queens New York. I am currently a senior in high school with aspiration of attending college to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering. I am fortunate that I attend an independent school called Dalton School in New York. Unfortunately, my family is not part of the 1% of rich families who attend. I am grateful that my grades allowed me the opportunity to attend and a generous scholarship afforded my the chance of a lifetime. However, the reality is college is expensive and I have a single Mom who is trying her best to provide and navigate this college admission process. The reality is this scholarship will provide me with the opportunity to attend college and hopefully have less stress regarding the financial obligations. In reading about Mr. Mullen he sounded like such a great individual. His legacy appears to be one that I would be proud to represent and continuel. I am driven, committed and dedicated to working hard while pursuing my dream of becoming a mechanical engineer. Even on the toughest days I continue to push through as I know the reward of accomplishing my goals will be worth it. Despite the challenges of being a woman and African American in a field that does not include many who look like me, I am inspired on being the change and hopefully inspiring others to pursue a career in engineering. I would like to think that I am dedicated to the field and am passionate about being a role model for others. I continue to reach back to others even though I am only 17 years old. I make it my mission to teach others about engineering while showing them the possibilities that the field presents. This scholarship would be life changing but it would also allow me to continue what I have started in my educational career. I just would love the opportunity to continue my journey while not having to be stressed out or burdened by financial obligations that my mother would undoubtedly not be able to manage as a single parent. This would help me more than I could even begin to write or imagine. It would ensure that my dream of becoming an engineer could be possible without the overburden of school loans. I want to help change the world and this scholarship would help in that effort.
      Reasons To Be - In Memory of Jimmy Watts
      In 2019, I visited Ghana, in West Africa and I went along and volunteered at a school named B.A.S.I.C International. My task was to teach students about robotics and engineering. The first few days we volunteered by painting the new school and providing new books for the upcoming school year. I was nervous and anxious about the experence as this was my 1st time in Africa and I had no idea what the students would think about my teaching. It was likely the best experience of my life. My mom had provided an engineering kit which included building a robot. It was the best thing ever. I had an opportunity to show them how they can build a robot but also talk to them about coding and competition. It was such a great experience that once I entered high school and I joined the robotics team, I immediately reached out to a local elementary school and offered my team services during after school. To my surprise and delight that school said yes to our plan and for the 2022-2023 school year I traveled once a week to a underserved elementary school and taught robotics and coding to the students. It has been the highlight of my junior year of highschool. In fact, that experience in Ghana continnues to influence me in teaching others. This summer I work for a tech company and I am tasked with going to 4 different camp sites teaching kids about coding, HTML, robotics and drone. Truly an extension of what started as a volunteer project in Ghana has turned into a life goal of mine in the future. That one experiene has shown me the importantce of giving back, but also has placed a desire in my heart to teach others. I love engineering and anything related to robotics. I hope in the future my career goals will give me an opportunity to teach and inspire others to work in the same field. Volunteering has been an intergral part of my life as I also been a Girl Scout since I was 5 years old. The last 12 years have been so gratifying and helpful in my growth as a person. I aspire to be a mechanical engineer but I wish to continue educating others about the field and hopefully inspire others to follow my lead. My Mom always says that volunteering benefits you more so then the organization or the people who learn from you.
      Sean Carroll's Mindscape Big Picture Scholarship
      I believe that it is important that we work to better understand the nature of our universe if we plan to be here on planet earth for centuries to come. Climate change is a real thing and so many people have been overlooking what damage we have done to the planet already. While I am only 17 I am trying to make an effort to reduce my carbon footprint by using reusable materials. Not throwing away so much plastic. By recycling and using the resources available in my community. In fact recently, I convinced my mom to get a composte container and a rain barel in an effort to help reuse rain water and to composte the things we have at home. I want to be around for the next 50 years, but I want a universe that will be safe for my future family. Small changes will affect the greater good of our universe. In 2019 I visited Ghana and I was saddened to see that ocean and filtration system in the country was non-existent. However, i was happy to see organizations educating the public about the harm of plastic and also participated in an ocean clean up while I was there. Yes, it was only a few hours that we helped but I felt that those few hours definitely made a difference in the universe. If everyone would just put in a few hours, our universe would be so much better in the long run. As I get older I am starting to realize that I have to do more in order for others to follow. I carry a water bottle with me so I do not have to constantly purchase a plastic water bottle. I use glass jars at home and try to limit the amount of take out boxes I get when leaving a restaurant. I do not own a car at this time, but I am sure when it is time I will purchase an electric car in order to help reduce the toxic fumes that in our air by the amount of gas vehicles on the road. I try and walk to most places and also reuse all things that I can. I also educate others along the way. I am interested in studying mechanical engineering in college and hope to one day come up with a product or system that will no only help my community but the world in the future.
      Joanne Pransky Celebration of Women in Robotics
      I love robotics. As a woman who is entering the field, I see the possibilities and opportunities are endless. In a perfect world, I would love to see more women who look like me in this field. The mere fact that robotics allows you to create things and also use critical thinking has been an amazing experience. While in third grade my Mom enrolled me in a local robotics league thinking it would be something I would enjoy. The first year I must admit it was basic lego concepts and building. It was not until 5th grade that I was introduced to actual robotics kits and builds. I found a place where I could be creative and use my love of math at the same time. By 5th grade I was hooked. I was determined to work hard and go to the local competitions with my teammates. I was not bothered that the team meet on Saturdays and included students from all boroughs of New York. From 3rd to 8th grade Forest Hills Robotics League was a place I called home. When I got accepted to my high school I had to make the hard choice and join my school team. While I missed my former teammates I am fortunate that they remain one of the best teams in New York and I compete against them every year. Even with that it is still robotics love and respect. I have been able to truly be in a space that I love and I feel that I have grown. The last thing that is left is for me to actually attend Worlds in Texas which has not happened for my school team but I am hopeful that this year will be my year to go. I hope to be an inspiration to other girls to pursue opportunities in robotics. It has been one of the best things I have been exposed to in my life. As an African American woman there are challenges in this field that I hope will change as time goes on. I must admit that at times I can get discouraged when I look around at competitions and other schools and see very few women but even fewer African American women or men who are participating in the field. I firmly believe that early access to the program and materials is key to getting my community engaged in robotics. I was fortunate that my mother introduced me to the field while in 3rd grade. I am forever grateful that she decided to let me try robotics to see if it was something that I would enjoy. She was right it has been the best part of the last 9 going on 10 years. With the exception of Covid I have not missed a tournament or season. In fact in 7th grade I fractured my ankle and I still participated and joined my team with crutches and all. It was an experience that I will never forget and just showed my dedication and love for this field. I hope to pursue my love of robotics in the future and to be an inspiration for others.