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nicholas vanderweele


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My life goal is to live a Godly life, have a wife and children, and be able to help Michigan achieve better roads. I am very passionate about ultimate frisbee and I enjoy learning and problem solving. I would like to improve our road infrastructure in Michigan so our roads will last.


Western Michigan University

Bachelor's degree program
2024 - 2027
  • Majors:
    • Civil Engineering

Grand Rapids Community College

Bachelor's degree program
2023 - 2024
  • Majors:
    • Civil Engineering

Forest Hills Central High School

High School
2019 - 2023


  • Desired degree level:

    Bachelor's degree program

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Civil Engineering
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Civil Engineering

    • Dream career goals:

    • Irrigation technician

      Thornapple lawncare
      2019 – Present5 years
    • Coach

      Zig Zag Ultimate
      2023 – Present1 year
    • Cashier / Cart pusher

      2022 – Present2 years
    • Lab Technician

      Reith Riley
      2023 – 2023


    Ultimate Frisbee

    2022 – Present2 years


    • Spirit


    • Forest Hills central

      Engineering designs
      2021 – 2023

    Public services

    • Volunteering

      Ada Bible Church — Greet
      2024 – Present

    Future Interests



    James T. Godwin Memorial Scholarship
    My grandpa served during Vietnam and is one of the most respectful, kind, helpful, and patient people I have ever known. He has taught me a lot about life and has taught me skills as well. He has a perfect marriage with God included. I strive to be like him. One story that stands out to me happened when I was around 16 years old. My grandpa wanted to show me how to drive a stick shift car. It was a hot summer day, and I was getting frustrated becauseI struggled to switch gears smoothly. I remember him always saying “Take your time.” He continued to encourage me until I eventually started to get the hang of it. This lesson taught me a lot about patience and persistence which has stuck with me throughout my life. Grandpa's influence goes beyond practical skills; he has also shown me the importance of kindness and respect. He always treats people with the utmost respect, no matter who they are or what their background is. This is something I have tried to carry into my own life, whether it is through my studies in civil engineering at Grand Rapids Community College or my part-time jobs as a coach, lawn care worker, irrigation technician, and asphalt lab technician. In each of these roles, I strive to be kind and respectful, just like my grandpa. One of the most valuable lessons my grandpa taught me is the importance of having strong values and living by them. He has a perfect marriage with God included, and this has shown me the importance of faith and commitment. I try to apply these values in my own life, whether it is in my relationships or my work. For example, when I am coaching ultimate frisbee, I always emphasize teamwork, respect, and perseverance. These are values that I learned from my grandpa, and I believe they are essential for success in any area of life. Despite my high school GPA of 2.7 and my current college GPA of 2.76, I am determined to work hard and improve. My grandpa's teachings about persistence and not giving up have been a great source of motivation for me. I know that with hard work and dedication, I can achieve my goals and make him proud. In conclusion, my grandpa has been a significant influence in my life. He has taught me valuable lessons about patience, kindness, respect, and the importance of strong values. I strive to be like him in everything I do, and I am grateful for the impact he has had on my life. I believe that these qualities make me a strong candidate for the James T. Godwin Memorial Scholarship, and I hope to continue to honor my grandpa's legacy through my studies and future career in civil engineering.
    Elijah's Helping Hand Scholarship Award
    My name is Nicholas VanderWeele, a rising sophomore at Grand Rapids Community College, majoring in Civil Engineering. If you're reading this, I want you to know about my journey, a journey that has been marked by struggle, resilience, and growth. Mental health has been my largest struggle through high school and into college, a struggle that has impacted my life in ways I could never have imagined. High school was tough. The pressure to perform well academically, combined with the stress of figuring out who I am and where I fit in the world, led me down a path of mental health struggles. I found it hard to accomplish simple tasks. Even completing coursework became an uphill battle. The result was a drop in my grades, and I even failed a class. It was a difficult time, but it was also a time of learning and growth. Entering college, I carried this struggle with me. The transition to a new environment, coupled with the increased academic demands of my Civil Engineering major, only exacerbated my mental health issues. My grades suffered, and my GPA fell to 2.76. However, it was during this time that I realized I needed to confront my mental health struggles head-on. I sought help. I started attending therapy and began to learn strategies to manage my mental health. It was not an easy process, but it was necessary. I learned to prioritize my mental well-being, to understand that it's okay to ask for help, and that struggling with mental health does not make me weak. It makes me human. This journey has taught me resilience. I have learned to not let my mental health struggles define me, but rather to see them as part of my journey. They have made me stronger, more empathetic, and more understanding of the struggles others may be going through. It has also sparked an interest in advocating for mental health awareness, especially among students. I am applying for the Elijah's Helping Hand Scholarship Award because I believe in the power of education. I believe that despite the struggles I have faced, I can excel in my Civil Engineering major and contribute positively to my community. This scholarship would provide me with the financial support I need to focus on my studies and continue my journey towards improved mental health. Through my experiences, I have learned that mental health struggles are not a sign of weakness, but a testament to the human spirit's resilience. I am not defined by my struggles, but by how I rise above them. I am Nicholas VanderWeele, a Civil Engineering student, a mental health advocate, and a survivor. I am not just a student with a mental health struggle; I am a student with a story of resilience and triumph.