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Rashmi Perceval

2545

Bold Points

4x

Nominee

3x

Finalist

1x

Winner

Bio

I am a Biology major at the University of Florida with a passion for learning, performing arts, and helping others. My family is a great source of inspiration for me, especially since I come from a large, yet tight-knit, Haitian family. They have guided me and supported me throughout my life, showing up to performances and events to cheer me on. I love to perform, whether it be through dancing, singing, or theatre, as I find the performing arts to be a great form of self expression. I also adore learning new languages. I currently have seven language courses that I am working on through Duolingo: French, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, German, Korean, Japanese, and Mainland China Mandarin. I love to make new connections and meet new people, learning about cultures and lifestyles different from my own. I find that keeping an open mind and expanding my horizons is a great way to connect and empathize with those who have different backgrounds than me.

Education

University of Florida

Bachelor's degree program
2022 - 2025
  • Majors:
    • Biology, General
  • Minors:
    • Music
  • GPA:
    4

Windermere High School

High School
2018 - 2022
  • GPA:
    4

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

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

  • Graduate schools of interest:

  • Transfer schools of interest:

  • Majors of interest:

    • Drama/Theatre Arts and Stagecraft
    • Medicine
    • Radiology Residency/Fellowship Programs
  • Planning to go to medical school
  • Test scores:

    • 1520
      SAT
    • 34
      ACT

    Career

    • Dream career field:

      Medicine

    • Dream career goals:

      Ophthalmology

      Sports

      Dancing

      Varsity
      2018 – 20224 years

      Arts

      • UF Floridance

        Dance
        Floridance Spring 23 Showcase
        2023 – Present
      • Windermere High School Choir

        Music
        Fall recitals, Winter recitals, Raise Your Voice 2019, Spring recitals, Candlelight Processional 2018, Candlelight Processional 2019
        2018 – 2022
      • Windermere High School Dance Company

        Dance
        Lip Sync Battle, Winter Spectacular, Gaylord Palms, Spring Recital
        2021 – 2022
      • Windermere High School

        Theatre
        Chicago, Thoroughly Modern Millie, 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Big Fish, Cinderella
        2018 – 2022

      Public services

      • Volunteering

        Christian Service Center — Volunteer
        2020 – 2022
      • Volunteering

        Rise Against Hunger — Volunteer
        2020 – 2021

      Future Interests

      Advocacy

      Volunteering

      Philanthropy

      Derk Golden Memorial Scholarship
      Many people may not consider dance a sport, but it is one that has changed my life. I started dancing at the age of 14, and even though I started late, it has become an integral part of my life. In my opinion, dance is multifaceted, serving as an art, sport, form of self expression, and so much more. Being on my high school’s dance team opened all the possibilities of dance to me. As I learned new dance skills, styles, and moves, I felt like I was unlocking new tools that I could use to express myself the way I wanted to. Hard-hitting hip-hop was always fun to show confidence and sass, dramatic lyrical allowed me to express any loss, hope, or longing, and the sharpness of pom let me have fun even when being so precise. The best part of performing, however, was connecting to the audience through my dancing. Emotions can be mirrored and felt in the audience, creating a sense of understanding between those of us on and off the stage. Through my dance journey, I not only learned how to channel my emotions in different ways, I also grew fundamentally as a person. One thing I learned is that even the easiest things require hard work. I had seen beautiful, effortless second turns, but it wasn’t until I put in that hard work that I was able to get my turns looking effortless as well. I also learned that it is okay to lean on others for help. Being on a team meant helping and supporting one another, and I would have never gotten many of my skills if it weren’t for my teammates encouraging me and helping me in any way they could. That process was very eye opening to me and went to show that critiques don’t equate criticism. Sometimes I may not like what I hear, but it may just be the very thing I needed in order to better myself as a dancer and a person. Being captain of my varsity team was the most gratifying yet eye opening experience throughout my dance journey. I was extremely grateful for all the experiences with my past teammates. They, along with my coach, gave me so many tools to succeed, so during my time as captain, I passed on those tools. Having been the quiet kid on the team during my freshman year, I used that experience to help others. I learned to be more empathetic because even though the veteran teammates were comfortable, it didn’t mean the rookies and freshman were. I had to learn to balance my needs with my teammates’ and how to be a mediator instead of being partial to my closer friends. Being captain presented many challenges, but the growth I had experienced throughout my dance journey aided me in leading my team in this amazing sport. Though I am no longer competing, I have found a great dance group at my university. One thing that being part of a sport guarantees is a community, no matter where you are. I truly feel this sense of camaraderie and community in my dance group. I have met so many wonderful people and have even begun to choreograph pieces to not only express myself through movement, but allow the dancers in my pieces to have that outlet to express themselves as well. There is so much strength and resilience amongst the dance community and I wouldn’t trade this sport for the world. I plan to continue to dance, to move, to express myself for many years to come.
      Disney Channel Rewind Scholarship
      My epic Disney Channel crossover would be one involving Shake It Up and A.N.T. Farm entitled “Up the ANTe.” In true Disney Channel fashion, the episode would be filled with silly shenanigans and larger than life circumstances. We open with Rocky and CeCe engaged in a dance battle with Gunter and Tinka in the Shake It Up Chicago studio, the stakes being the winner gets full reign of that week’s dance. When Rocky and CeCe win, Gary tells them they have to blow him away with the dance, or else it may be the last time they lead a dance for the show, possibly even threatening their position at Shake It Up Chicago. We cut to San Francisco, California where we see Olive excitedly telling Chyna and Fletcher about how she saw facts stating how teleportation machines could be built, so she built one herself. They want to go see a Broadway show in NYC when Chyna suggests they shake things up and watch a Broadway show in Chicago. We then cut back to Rocky and CeCe concerned about what to do to blow Gary away when all of a sudden, the A.N.T. Farm crew appears on the Shake It Up Chicago stage. Though they had wanted to see a Broadway show, the A.N.T.s agree to help Rocky and CeCe with Chyna singing live for their dance, Olive doing the lighting and sound design, and Fletcher designing and painting a set. He decides it would be cool to integrate the teleportation machine into the set when he has an issue moving a backdrop into the machine. Placing his paintbrush in a random spot on the machine, he asks for some help hanging up the backdrop. Chyna and Olive are busy at the tech booth working with mics, so Rocky and CeCe offer to help Fletcher. CeCe accidentally closes the door behind her, activating the machine, sending the three of them to Webster High School. Chyna and Olive turn around to find that they are alone in the studio and freak out when they see that Fletcher left his phone behind. We find Rocky, CeCe, and Fletcher freaking out when they realize they’re not in Chicago anymore. They try to start the machine back up, but it sputters before shutting down. We cut back and forth between those in Chicago trying to keep Gary from replacing Rocky and CeCe and those in California as they try several silly methods to get the machine working again. After a little montage of panic to show the passage of time, we settle on Rocky, CeCe, and Fletcher stressing about how the show is due to start in Chicago in an hour and they’re still stuck in California. The girls realize they hadn’t figured out one part of the choreography, so they decide to run it once in hopes that they will be able to perform it on stage. They decide to change a move to a hip bump and Rocky accidentally bumps into the machine. A clattering sound is heard while the machine starts up again. Turns out, Fletcher stuck his paintbrush in the space between gears, keeping them from rotating and starting up the machine. The three of them rush into the machine to get back to Chicago. Gary has given up on Rocky and CeCe and Chyna and Olive have lost hope. Gary starts the show, and as the lights come up, the machine appears onstage and CeCe and Rocky emerge, ready to dance. Chyna sings for them and the silly, larger-than-life situation works out in the end.
      Windward Spirit Scholarship
      The Ode to Millennials-Gen Z text speaks truth on a level not many people outside of these generations would care to admit. There is so often talk of millennials and Gen Z having it easy, that we wouldn’t have survived “back in the day.” However, just like the text said, our generations are fighting the same fights people did in the mid-1900s, maybe even more so. These battles are not isolated to one period of time. The resilience seen in people living through World War II and the Great Depression is not foreign to millennials and Gen Z. If anything, we’ve learned that resilience from them and from the state of the world they’ve left us. The statement of the author’s parents’ generation wanting them to write, the author’s generation wanting to use the telephone, and millennials and Gen Z not answering their phones speaks volumes. The things we grow up hearing we often turn around and say to the following generation, almost as if we were not like that at their age. Looking toward the next generation is simply a mirror of one’s past. The same struggles those before us faced are amplified, and though we’re criticized for “having it too easy,” we experience all the same fears, hopes, and strengths of our predecessors. The lives of millennials and Gen Z may seem easier to older generations because of the technological advances that we have, yet we’re facing so much more socially, physically, and emotionally than those older than us give us credit for. The “Greatest Generation” may feel that they have suffered and fought through more than anyone else can know, but so many of them may not realize that the state of the world that millennials and Gen Z inherited is not any better than what they grew up with. And yet, we look toward our seemingly bleak future with hope. As the author said, we very well may be the “Greatest Generation 2.0.” Though we may be facing wars, economic troubles, environmental woes, and a myriad of other social disparities, millennials and Gen Z are full of perseverance, kindness, and ambition. We truly do have a “rendezvous with destiny” and we will embrace it with pride and hope for our futures.
      Zendaya Superfan Scholarship
      Growing up as a young Black girl, seeing Zendaya on screen was inspiring. Being one of the few people who looked like me in my performing arts classes, I began to feel as if I didn’t belong. However, just watching Zendaya on-screen or listening to her music showed me that despite all the odds, I belonged there. I feel that it is difficult for me to choose just one aspect of her career that I admire the most as almost everything she’s done has been an inspiration to me. I think that her authenticity and supportive nature while being such an influential trailblazer is something I truly admire. I have been looking up to Zendaya ever since her Shake It Up! days. Rocky Blue was, and undoubtedly still is, an icon. I vividly remember watching Zendaya execute killer dance moves alongside Bella Thorne. Seeing her dance inspired me to take my interest in dance seriously. I ended up falling in love with dancing because of her and I continue to dance to this day. Zendaya’s career as a singer left its mark on me as well. The very first song I ever bought on iTunes was “Replay.” I truly did listen to the song all day, looping it over and over, not just because it was one of the few songs I had, but because it was a reminder of what someone just like me could accomplish. Since I had always loved to sing and play piano since I was a toddler, seeing Zendaya’s music career flourish reminded me that my worth as a musician was not contingent on the color of my skin or the texture of my hair. She was truly a trailblazer for young, Black girls in the film and music industry and she continues to pave the way so that others may be encouraged to pursue their dreams. Growing up and watching Zendaya branch out from Disney to take on more serious roles in both film and society allowed me to see a side of her that I had always been drawn to as a child, I just never realized it. She is someone who is unafraid to use her platform for good, whether it be uplifting others, helping those in need, or simply spreading positivity. Watching her in interviews, she never fails to remain humble and authentic, never putting on a face for the public, but keeping her peace and preserving her private life. I truly admire her ability to keep her public and private life separate while all the while remaining her true authentic self. Her growth from her days on Disney to today shows how much she has come into her own, and how much she helps others do the same. Her supportive and loving nature not only for those she knows personally, but for her fans as well, is something that may seem contrived in other celebrities but is unequivocally authentic in Zendaya. She is unafraid to use her platform to speak up for what she believes in and uplift voices that would otherwise be left in the dark. Her humility despite all her accomplishments is precisely why I find Zendaya to be an admirable role model.
      Harry Potter and the Sorting Hat Scholarship
      Ever since I picked up my first Harry Potter book in the 3rd grade, I felt a strong connection and affinity for the house of Ravenclaw. Maybe it was simply the fact that blue was (and still is) my favorite color, but as I grew up, I began to realize why I felt Ravenclaw was the fit for me. Though I always felt that I belonged in Ravenclaw, that was proved time and time again through sorting quizzes. When I took the official Pottermore test and was sorted into Ravenclaw, I was elated. At this time, Pottermore was interactive with the houses competing against each other, accumulating points to be the top house at the end of the week. The sense of camaraderie working with other like-minded people towards a similar goal was exhilarating. As the Sorting Hat says in the first book, Ravenclaws will “always find their kind.” I truly felt I had when I signed up for Pottermore. When the website was revamped, I lost my login information and had to take the official sorting quiz again, once again being sorted into Ravenclaw. To have this confirmed officially not once, but twice, made me feel as if I truly belonged there. However, it wasn’t until I continued to read the series that I realized for myself what it meant to be a Ravenclaw. Wisdom. Wit. Learning. These are the terms the Sorting Hat used to describe Ravenclaws. Though not explicitly mentioned, a sense of creativity and a touch of eccentricity doesn’t elude Ravenclaws, a prime example being Luna Lovegood. I find myself to be someone who loves to create, learn new things, and enhance my knowledge of almost anything and everything. I consider myself to be very curious, wondering how things work and wanting to understand how other people think. If something has piqued my interest in even the slightest, I take it upon myself to learn more about it. I've recently found a reinvigorated love of languages. I have always loved learning new languages, but I have taken that to a new extreme with 8 language courses on Duolingo. I hit a 2-year streak just this past week and I hope that I can continue to grow in my comprehension and conversational skills in these languages. In more stereotypical Ravenclaw fashion, I am rather academically inclined and competitive. I grasp certain topics and subjects better than others, but I do not rest until where I am lacking is up to par. I set high academic standards for myself, sometimes getting disappointed when I fail to reach those ridiculously high goals, which usually entails not getting a perfect score when I really want to. Interestingly enough, my disposition to want to learn more helps me reach my academic goals, so these traits of Ravenclaw truly pair well together in my academic life. Some people may consider Ravenclaws “nerdy.” Though I feel that does not represent Ravenclaw as a whole, I will admit I love brain teasers and logic puzzles, often playing logic grid puzzles as a way to unwind after a long day. Throughout my journey of experiencing the Wizarding World through the Harry Potter books, I came to find that my love for and connection to Ravenclaw was not based on something as shallow as liking the house colors. Growing up reading the Harry Potter series and learning more about the houses truly showed me that Ravenclaw would be the perfect house for me. The love of knowledge and learning is something I hold near and dear, and I am sure that my fellow Ravenclaws do, too.
      Michael Rudometkin Memorial Scholarship
      When I think of selflessness, I think about helping others and putting their needs above my own, not looking to gain anything in return. Though I feel that I embody that idea of selflessness, I believe that something is unintentionally gained. Helping someone in a situation unlike your own helps build one’s empathy. Helping others find their strengths can help one view the world differently. In helping others, I find that I always learn something myself. I have always been someone who wants others to succeed. I don’t see other people’s successes as my failures, but as a moment for others to shine. I have really seen the impact of that mindset in dance. I started dancing at my high school in my freshman year, accumulating skills, flexibility, and tricks through hard work, dedication, and perseverance. As the years went on and new members joined the team, I would be more than glad to help give them tips and tricks to help improve their skills. A big thing that was a requirement to be on the varsity dance team was knowing how to do second turns. A lot of people struggled to learn how to turn, and would often ask for help. I would always work through the movements in depth and applaud growth rather than see their improvement as a threat to my position on the team. Even when competing against each other in the solo and duet/trio divisions, I would not hesitate to offer words of support and advice and found joy in watching others nail their performances, regardless of what that meant for my personal placings in the division. Watching other people’s hard work and growth show on stage was worth more to me than getting any trophy or medal. I also love to help others when they are struggling to grasp academic topics. I believe that people are more intelligent than they think they are, they just haven’t found the way of learning that works for them. I have found that I often put teaching and helping others above studying for myself, but I also discovered that in helping others learn, I have also gained the knowledge I needed. Even now in college, I will meet new people during office hours and offer to study together because I want people to be able to do their best to achieve their goals. If the one thing that’s going to hurt their GPA and their chances of getting into medical school in the future is chemistry, I am more than happy and willing to sit down for hours at a time and work out the best ways to understand concepts. I think the biggest way I embody selflessness is through volunteering. I especially love to volunteer with organizations that work towards ending hunger and the hunger crisis. I’ve worked with organizations like Matthew’s Hope, Second Harvest Food Bank, and Rise Against Hunger, just to name a few. All of them work towards feeding the hungry and malnourished populations of not just the community, but even worldwide. My favorite organization is Rise Against Hunger as the work we do in a little warehouse for a few hours packing nutritional meals goes a long way in helping people around the world get a fulfilling, nutritional, healthy meal. Overall, I feel that in supporting the successes of others, I embody selflessness. Though I don’t look to gain anything, I’ve found I’ve gained more experiences, lessons, and friendships than I could have ever imagined.
      Barbie Dream House Scholarship
      If I had my very own Barbie Dream House, I would locate it in a sunny location that’s not too far from the beach and experience the prettiest aspects of the four seasons, like freshly fallen snow, blooming flowers, or orange autumn leaves. The outside of my house would be a cute baby blue with lavender accents because blue is my absolute favorite color. It would be a wide, two to three-story house with castle-esque towers on the front corners of the house. Those little towers would be rooms that have bay windows. The lawn would be huge in the front and be freshly trimmed and a luscious, healthy green. There would be a flower bed around the perimeter of the house, but I would want the lawn to be relatively empty to allow for outdoor gatherings and games. In front of the double doors at the front of the house, there would be a tiered fountain made of stone with decorative lily pads in the water of each tier. In the backyard, there would be a large pool that would be mostly rectangular but have semicircles at each end. It would also have a hot tub and a built-in waterslide with rock decor surrounding it. There would be so much backyard area and there would also be a large, circular trampoline in the back. I would want the backyard to be relatively open as well, though there would be a patio with grills, seating, and a television to host guests and have parties. Similar to Barbie, I love to do many different things. Inside my house, on the first floor I would have a dance room equipped with a barre spanning on one wall, mirrors across the opposite wall, and marley flooring. I would also have mats, bosu balls, blocks, stretch bands, and everything else of the sort to help train and improve my dancing. The room would have overhead lighting but also have large panel windows on the wall where the barre is to allow for some nice natural lighting. I would also have a two-story gym, one story for body weight and cardio training and one story for weight training. It would be equipped with dumbbells, barbells, smith machines, leg presses, benches, and everything in between. I would also have a two-story library filled to the brim with action, fantasy, romance, comedy, and thriller novels. I would probably have an open floor plan with the kitchen and the living room being connected. I would want a gas stove and a kitchen island along with a giant fridge that can keep stock of everything I’ve put in there and when produce is set to expire. I would also want a large pantry not only filled with food but with baking and cooking supplies as well. In my house, I would also want a game room, a theater room, and a music room. The music room would have a keyboard, guitar, recording booth, a blank wall for recording self-tapes for auditions, and soundproof walls and paneling so that I could sing and play my heart out without bothering anyone. Each bedroom would be customized for the person that would stay there and I think it would be cool to have themed rooms. Each room would have its own bathroom and there would be 2 extra half bathrooms on each floor for guests to use. I would want my Dream House to have all this and more not for myself, but for my family and friends so that we could all live together in our fabulous Dream House.
      Book Lovers Scholarship
      If there’s one book I would have everyone in the world read, it would probably be the first book in the Hunger Games series, “The Hunger Games.” It is truly a commentary on what modern society is like and what it is setting itself up to be, showing how polarized America is becoming when it comes to classism and elitism. The wealthy citizens in the Capitol have no true worries and all the problems that plague them are truly superficial. Though they know the districts, especially the higher number ones, are barely scraping by, the Capitol attributes the districts’ suffering to the plights of their ancestors, unjustly believing they should still be paying for them generations later. A game of life or death for the tributes is merely a form of entertainment for the Capitol. Not only does it provide commentary on how the wealthy arrogantly find enjoyment in the suffering of the impoverished, it also shows a smart, calculating, and capable young woman being at the helm of something bigger than herself. Katniss does not need Gale or Peeta to defend her as she is a very capable person and has many different survival skills. Through showing the development of Katniss’s and Peeta’s relationship, I think Suzanne Collins did a great job of showing how while you may be strong yourself, there is also strength in finding help in others. Ever since she lost her father, Katniss had been the backbone of her family, so when she finally opened up to Peeta, she was able to find new strength and comfort instead of trying to suffer through everything alone. I think Katniss’s character also shows how feminism does not only empower women to be strong and independent but to understand their limits and that it is okay to find support in those that you love. Though these themes are built upon throughout the trilogy, I think the first book really drives those points home, reflecting how our current society uplifts the rich and looks down on the poor. It almost serves as a warning that if we don’t rectify our mistakes and create a society based on equality and justice, we ourselves may be living in a future not too dissimilar to that of Panem.
      Barbara Cain Literary Scholarship
      Ever since I was young I loved reading. I remember being in Pre-K, showing my parents and siblings that I could read and understand some of the words in Peter and the Starcatcher. Some of my fondest memories were going to the local library in my pajamas once a week to be read to. In school, I would never dreaded taking the Accelerated Reader tests. In fact, I looked forward to them and was grateful for the requirement as that meant I had even more of a reason to read. Though I love and have always loved fiction books, especially fantasy and action novels, I feel that these have shaped my perception of the world and myself. Recently, I have been reading the "Renegades" series by Marissa Meyer and have found that they have a rather deep message, especially if you peel back the layers. Though I am still in the process of reading the books, even the first book showed nuances that could be related to life and society. The main character, Nova, has alliances with the supervillains of the world, though as she happens to interact more with the superheroes, she realizes that there is good and bad on both sides. Something that Nova is adamant about that really resonates with me is that society should be fair and people should strive to work hard and work together to create a fairer society. Inequality, whether it be social, financial, racial, or anything else, is something that I hope to fight. With my field of study, I plan to become a doctor. I hope that I can open a private practice to provide affordable care options and go on medical mission trips to provide medical care to those in other countries who may need it. Though this does not necessarily align directly with Nova’s sentiments, I relate to her view of the world as those in power in "Renegades" were able to do so through happenstance. Had the superheroes not been able to use the chaos of the period of anarchy to take charge and anoint themselves as the chief counsel, society in the world of "Renegades" would look a lot different. I feel that also reflects how many inequalities in the modern world stem from choices and actions made decades, maybe even centuries ago. For example, being a first-generation Haitian American, I find the state of Haiti to be on a list of my priorities and I hope to one day be able to help finance the creation of better schools and hospitals there. Not too dissimilar to the world of "Renegades," following the period of the Haitian Revolution and Haitian independence in 1804, France essentially required Haiti to buy their independence, even though they fought for it and won. This action in the 1800s was able to occur due to France’s power and Haiti’s lack of it. This situation that occurred three centuries ago has had a negative impact on Haiti to this day. Though it is wishful thinking, like Nova, I feel that if global and national societies were able to create an environment of equality and fairness, we would be much better off. Though it truly isn’t plausible to believe that everything in the world will become fairer overnight, I think that this book has helped drive my goal of working toward being an ophthalmologist. With my medical knowledge, I can help bridge the gap in affordable, quality healthcare and hopefully help to create new and better schools and hospitals in Haiti so that society can get closer to equality one step at a time.
      Barbara J. DeVaney Memorial Scholarship Fund
      I would use this scholarship money to help pay for my undergrad education so that eventually I can go to medical school and become an ophthalmologist. I am a first-generation Haitian-American, the daughter of two immigrants from Haiti who worked hard to provide a life for their kids that they never had for themselves. This has inspired me not only to work to create a better life for myself but also for my parents and my family. My parents have worked hard their entire lives to provide for me and my two siblings, along with offering support to family in Haiti. They instilled the importance of family in me from a young age not only with their words, but also with their actions. No matter how cramped or crowded we would be, my parents would house any family members who needed a place to stay. Following the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, some of my cousins came to America as the earthquake devastated Haiti and its infrastructure. Though having more people in the house meant working longer hours to provide for all of us, my parents valued the health, safety, and support of family more than anything. That being said, I want to work hard to reciprocate everything my parents have given to me. In finding success in my career, I can give back to my parents the same way they have given to me. I have been playing piano since I was 4, and lessons were not cheap, but my parents felt that it was important for me to have this opportunity, especially since they were never able to learn how to play an instrument when they were younger. I hope that I can get my parents the proper teachers to teach them how to play whatever instruments they desire because they deserve to have these opportunities that they worked so hard to provide for me and my siblings. My parents have done their best to provide me with everything I need and continue to work hard so that I can go to college. Though medical school and the path to becoming a doctor is a long and arduous one, it is completely worth it when considering the outcomes. Like my parents, I want to provide for my family, present and future. I also want to contribute to a positive image of Haitian Americans and Black women, especially in STEM as many people doubt our capabilities. My parents have found success in STEM, regardless of the linguistic, cultural, and racial barriers, and I hope to continue that trend of Black excellence. In creating a better life for myself by becoming a doctor, I can create a better life for my parents. Though they were able to build themselves up, they never truly got to reap what they sowed as they felt it was more important to provide for others. I want them to be able to receive the fruits of their labor, and I feel that this scholarship will bring me one step closer to providing the life for my parents that they have provided for me.
      Servant Ships Scholarship
      I have read a lot of books and seen many different films, and though a lot of them have usually been fantasy or action, they often have an underlying message that I carry with me. My favorite movie of all time is “The Prince of Egypt,” which is a retelling of the story of Moses and the book of Exodus. This film has shown me that though I may feel unworthy or unfit to pursue certain things, there is a God that has put me on this path, all I have to do is accept. “The Princess and the Frog” resonated with me as a young Black girl as it was the first film I had seen in theaters, and Tiana’s resilience and determination have stuck with me. That movie helped a younger me realize that it is perfectly okay and possible for me to reach for the skies and achieve what I set my heart on. The movies “Soul” and “Inside Out” had a special impact on my view of myself as they emphasized that it is okay to feel, to emote, to not be okay, or to not be certain of what the future holds. I feel like all these messages have wrapped up and helped me realize that I am worthy, my goals and aspirations are valid, and so are my highs and lows. Holding all these ideals, God willing, I will achieve my goal of becoming an ophthalmologist. It will take years of medical school, residency, and fellowship, but I feel that education is a very valuable tool. I hope that with my ability, education, and training, I will be able to go on medical missionary trips, providing eye care worldwide to those who need it and lack access to it. I especially hope to take medical missionary trips to Haiti, as that is where my family is from. However, I feel that the most important thing I can do is educate others when it comes to personal health and healthy life choices and lifestyles. There is only so much I can do in a small period of time during those trips, but to leave someone with life-changing information that can help them live long, fruitful lives is something that lasts a lifetime. Another one of my goals, not too dissimilar to Tiana, is to open my own place, my own private practice that is affordable so that people who need to get cataract, glaucoma, or any other eye surgery, may have an option available to them. I hope that I can use my education to help others educate themselves and my training and practice in the medical field to provide affordable and effective medical care.
      Strong Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarship
      In high school, I was fairly involved with my school, being a part of the theater, choir, and dance departments along with other clubs and extracurriculars. Being one of the few Black students, let alone Black girls, in these departments made me realize the importance of having a voice, especially when it came to making big decisions and speaking up for myself. In my freshman year, I didn’t know the other people on my dance team too well and they had already known each other for a while. On top of that, I was the only Black girl on JV and one of two Black girls on the team overall. Having experienced my freshman year from the point of view of the quiet freshman who had to ask questions that no one else on her team could relate to, I found that as I grew into being a leader, it was incredibly important that everyone’s voices were heard. Throughout my high school dance team career, I began to become more confident in my dancing and comfortable with dance team, which was a turning point for me as that’s when I began to truly become a leader. Becoming captain my senior year, I made sure that all teammates felt that they belonged, making that connection with those who believed no one cared whether or not they were present. I also love to help others succeed in achieving their goals, so giving helpful technique tips and tricks became a big thing for me. I found that being a leader and a captain was about working together to improve and do what’s best for the team, not doing whatever I wanted simply because I was captain. Theater and dance were comfort spots for me as I had done them in middle school and a lot of my friends carried over. That comfort helped me feel more at ease with taking on a leadership role as I didn’t feel ostracized or that I had something to prove. My background in music and strengths in piano definitely helped me be a good leader in these aspects as I used those strengths and talents in whatever way helped my choir and theater departments. If someone needed help with the rhythm or melody for an audition, I would not hesitate to help. There is nothing to lose by helping others succeed. If someone needed an accompanist for their vocal solo or a piano recording for a self-tape, I was happy to offer my services. Leading by example is something I took very seriously. In aiding others and being a reliable, dependable person to look towards, I feel I lead by a positive example. I think that the clubs I’ve joined, my background, and my experiences, along with using my strengths in a way to help others find theirs, have helped me develop and strengthen my empathy, reliability, integrity, and humility, just to name a few. I feel that these traits that I have developed throughout my lifetime have helped me become a reliable leader who aims to work together despite setbacks instead of falling apart when things go awry. I think being part of a minority and having that experience of feeling ostracized has also given me empathy and the ability to truly lead others in the best way possible. After all, to me, being a leader is not about being in a position of power or control, but of being in a position to help others better themselves, and their crafts, and reach their goals.
      Disney Super Fan Scholarship
      My favorite thing about Disney is its ability to bring people together and its depiction of the importance of family. Family is something I value highly in my life as my family is rather tight-knit. My parents are immigrants who came from Haiti in order to find a better life for themselves and their future kids. They were able to do that with the support of their siblings and cousins who already lived in the US, and, when the time came, they began to become the support system other family members could rely on. Being first generation Haitian-American, I grew up with the importance of family and support instilled in me from a very young age. I grew up close to my cousins as if they were my own siblings. My family is rather big, so I have a lot of cousins that still live in Haiti. They all speak Haitian Creole and I am not truly fluent in the language, but whenever some of my cousins would come from Haiti to visit, my mom always tried to make their trip especially memorable by taking them to Downtown Disney (now Disney Springs) or a Walt Disney World theme park. Though there was a language barrier, we would always be able to bond through Disney. This summer, I was able to go to the Disney World parks with some cousins of mine from Haiti. Though I am not fully comfortable with expressing myself in Haitian Creole, I wanted to ensure they would have an enjoyable experience. We went on different rides, whether it be Tower of Terror or Rise of Resistance, and afterward, we would all be laughing, recounting each person’s reactions to the big drops and fast-paced movements. There is no language barrier when it comes to expressing joy and love, and Disney has helped me to connect with my family and make memories in a way unlike any other. Even things that I take for granted, like the views on the People Mover, are things that my cousins have never experienced before and find beautiful. I’m so grateful that we can provide them with an experience that is truly difficult to come by and that we can become closer through it. The moment I realized how much Disney’s depictions of family meant to me was watching the Happily Ever After fireworks show in Magic Kingdom with my cousins. Even though it was a long day at the parks, my mom was adamant about them seeing the fireworks as Disney’s fireworks are truly spectacular. Watching the “You’ll Be In My Heart” section where all the families are embracing each other, I began to tear up. Even now, looking back on the clips made my eyes water and my heart swell because the love of family, biological or found, is so beautiful and beautifully depicted in Disney films. The ability to embrace your loved ones despite all that has happened is depicted in such a moving way that I resonated with, and I truly am blessed to be able to have those experiences and connections with my family through Disney.
      Our Destiny Our Future Scholarship
      Growing up as a child of Haitian immigrants, I always heard stories about Haiti and the hardships my parents had to go through growing up. Their ability to help families back in Haiti now has shown me that I can make a positive impact as well. Hunger is a prevalent issue in Haiti and a lot of my volunteer work has been aimed at helping reduce the impact of food insecurity. I have volunteered with many different organizations that work to help local and global communities, with Rise Against Hunger being my favorite. This organization creates meal packets to send out to countries around the world, with Haiti being one of them. In just two hours, we can assemble and package thousands of meals that are packed with important nutrients. I plan on continuing to work with Rise Against Hunger along with other organizations aimed at reducing food insecurity and hunger worldwide. I hope to also make a positive impact through my career. As an undergraduate Biology major, I hope to go to medical school and become a doctor. I plan on becoming a cornea/anterior ophthalmologist, focusing on vision repair, doing procedures such as LASIK and SMILE. One surgery that general ophthalmologists focus on is glaucoma surgery. When left untreated, Type 2 Diabetes can lead to glaucoma, with diabetics having double the chance of developing glaucoma. With minorities such as African-American, Hispanic, Latino, and Asian American people having a higher risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, they are likely to be the groups prone to developing glaucoma. Unfortunately, in America these groups are often disproportionately affected by socioeconomic inequalities, and glaucoma surgery tends to be on the more expensive side. I hope that by going into this field, I can make a difference and help make glaucoma surgery more accessible, especially if I open my own private practice. It is unjust that the minorities that are more susceptible to glaucoma are given fewer opportunities to treat it. The biggest plan I have for my future is to use my medical abilities to help others globally through medical missionaries. I hope to travel to countries where people struggle to get access to affordable, accessible healthcare and help them. My dad has done many medical missionary trips to Haiti and I hope to join him one day along with visiting other countries. Healthcare is extremely important and I believe that no matter what, everyone deserves to be able to get quality healthcare. I plan on donating to charities, especially those with aims to eradicate hunger and homelessness. I hope that I will be able to not only help my home country of Haiti but to also help change so many lives for the better worldwide.
      Jeannine Schroeder Women in Public Service Memorial Scholarship
      I have always been a strong supporter of working toward ending malnourishment and hunger around the world. My parents immigrated from Haiti, one of the hungriest countries in the world. Growing up, I began to realize the opportunities and privileges I had here in America that those in Haiti didn't, so I started to get involved in my community. I have volunteered with many organizations, helping to feed those within my community and even throughout the world. I have worked with Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida, preparing meals, cutting meat, and slicing veggies. I loved that they had many different programs for those in Central Florida struggling with food insecurity, allowing them to pick the plan that works best for them and their families. Though I loved preparing the food that would be distributed, I found that my experience was lacking interaction with my community. I began to volunteer with other organizations that had larger groups of volunteers in a shift, allowing me to meet people from different walks of life. Though I was interacting with my community more, I felt that I could do more than simply pack care boxes to send out. That was when I found an organization I have come to love and care about deeply. The Christian Service Center for Central Florida is an organization that provides food, clothing, assistance in paying rent and utilities, and provides aid in finding shelter. Volunteering with this organization was great as I would arrive at the building, prepare freshly cooked meals, and distribute them to those who needed them. I had the opportunity to directly impact the lives of those suffering from food insecurity as this was the first organization I had volunteered with that had hot meals cooked and distributed immediately. The building also had a free convenience store and loads of fresh fruits and veggies, ensuring that the meals provided would be nutritious and balanced. For many of the people that received meals, that was the only time of the week they could guarantee they would eat, so we sent them off with multiple plates to aid them throughout the week. I love that this organization also addresses other social issues, which is why I am proud to volunteer with them. My favorite organization by far is Rise Against Hunger. This organization prepares nutritional meals to package and ship out to different countries across the world, including Haiti. Each package contains a rice and soy meal of rice, soy, dehydrated vegetables, and a micronutrient packet. I find that the work Rise Against Hunger does is so important because of its global impact and goal of creating food security through nutrition security. Working together with other volunteers, we can package thousands of meals in just two hours. The impact of this organization is so great and volunteering with them allows me to help provide food to those suffering from food insecurity in Haiti. Even though I am unable to travel to the country and give my assistance in person, I feel connected to Haiti more now than ever before. I hope to one day be able to travel there and help in person in any way I can. Overall, I strongly believe that food insecurity is one of the biggest issues of our time, and if we work together, we could improve the health and lives of so many around the world. I plan to continue to volunteer with these organizations and I hope that one day, food insecurity can be completely eradicated.
      She Rose in STEAM Scholarship
      Education and the ability to help those without proper access to it are very important things to me. As a Biology major, there are many things I’ve learned and am continuing to learn that basic health education does not supply to many people. Being a first-generation Haitian-American, I’ve been fortunate enough to have access to healthcare and healthcare knowledge that was not entirely available to my parents while they were still in Haiti. While this is not indicative of all Haitians’ beliefs and viewpoints on health, some do have superstitions attached to certain conditions, often regarding illness and disease as a result of voodoo or witchcraft. This unfortunately results in many people not looking for the proper care they need to get better. This coupled with a lack of resources for Haiti’s hospitals makes healthcare in Haiti difficult. I hope that by completing my degree and eventually completing medical school, I will be able to aid Haiti and other LDCs in receiving the proper healthcare and health education they deserve. With my degree, I plan on becoming a cornea/anterior ophthalmologist, focusing on vision repair, doing procedures such aS LASIK and SMILE. One surgery that general ophthalmologists focus on is glaucoma surgery. When left untreated, Type 2 Diabetes can lead to glaucoma, with diabetics having double the chance of developing glaucoma. With minorities such as African-American, Hispanic, Latino, and Asian American people having a higher risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, they are likely to be the groups prone to developing glaucoma. Unfortunately, in America, these groups are often disproportionately affected by socioeconomic inequalities, and glaucoma surgery tends to be on the more expensive side. It is unjust that the minorities that are more susceptible to glaucoma are given fewer opportunities to treat it. I hope that by going into this field, I can make a difference and help make glaucoma surgery more accessible, especially if I open my own private practice. America is a melting pot of different races, nationalities, and ethnicities, and while knowing English is often considered an unspoken standard in this country, I intend to learn different languages to bridge that linguistic gap in the medical field, especially for those that are deaf or hard of hearing. I feel that having access to a healthcare professional with whom you can speak comfortably is something many immigrants struggle with if they are not fluent in English. No one should be discouraged or belittled, especially when it comes to something as important as personal health and well-being. Knowing Haitian Creole is already one step in the direction I hope to go with keeping healthcare accessible, and I plan to learn more languages or have proper access to translators to give non-English speakers the proper care they deserve. With this degree and knowledge, I hope to educate and advocate for minorities as well as inspire younger generations, showing them that it is possible to achieve these dreams and they are never too young to start making a difference.
      She Rose in Health Scholarship
      Education and the ability to help those without proper access to it are very important things to me. As a Biology major, there are many things I’ve learned and am continuing to learn that basic health education does not supply to many people. Being a first-generation Haitian-American, I’ve been fortunate enough to have access to healthcare and healthcare knowledge that was not entirely available to my parents while they were still in Haiti. While this is not indicative of all Haitians’ beliefs and viewpoints on health, some do have superstitions attached to certain conditions, often regarding illness and disease as a result of voodoo or witchcraft. This unfortunately results in many people not looking for the proper care they need to get better. This coupled with a lack of resources for Haiti’s hospitals makes healthcare in Haiti difficult. I hope that by completing my degree and eventually completing medical school, I will be able to aid Haiti and other LDCs in receiving the proper healthcare and health education they deserve. With my degree, I plan on becoming a cornea/anterior ophthalmologist, focusing on vision repair, performing procedures such as LASIK and SMILE. One surgery that general ophthalmologists focus on is glaucoma surgery. When left untreated, Type 2 Diabetes can lead to glaucoma, with diabetics having double the chance of developing glaucoma. With minorities such as African-American, Hispanic, Latino, and Asian American people having a higher risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, they are likely to be the groups prone to developing glaucoma. Unfortunately, in America, these groups are often disproportionately affected by socioeconomic inequalities, and glaucoma surgery tends to be on the more expensive side. I hope that by going into this field, I can make a difference and help make glaucoma surgery more accessible, especially if I open my own private practice. It is unjust that the minorities that are more susceptible to glaucoma are given fewer opportunities to treat it. This scholarship will aid me on my path toward graduating with my B.S. in Biology, opening doors to medical school and my future. I can’t wait to be able to help others in the professional world, whether it be through my career, volunteering, or advocating for those who may need it. With this degree and knowledge, I hope to educate and advocate for minorities as well as inspire younger generations, showing them that it is possible to achieve these dreams and they are never too young to start making a difference.
      Learner Math Lover Scholarship
      Math is a beautiful blend of concrete realism and fluid spontaneity. The ability to apply math to real world concepts and situations while simultaneously being able to explore unknown concepts is intriguing to me. I often find myself engrossed in my calculus homework, losing track of time as I solve problem after problem, only to realize I have to head to my next class. Even so, I find myself prioritizing math work over other classes, getting ahead in calculus concepts and teaching myself as I go. It’s so validating and satisfying once a concept officially clicks for me. Knowing and understanding math gets me excited to help others do the same. Understanding math concepts through a personalized process makes the task seem a lot less daunting, and once I understand a problem, the practice questions feel like fun, yet enriching, brain games. I find that my love for math is based on my connection to math. I consider myself someone who likes to work with order and structure while being open to improvisation and creativity. Even when I’m creating, whether it be art or music, I feel grounded knowing there is a concrete foundation to what I am doing. I find that math functions similarly. No matter how complex or abstract a problem may be, it can always be boiled down to the basics, the foundations. Sometimes it feels like a question is impossible, but knowing that the end goal is something I’ve worked towards a thousand times is comforting. Math has a sense of familiarity and continuity not only within itself, but with me.
      Haiti Rising Christlike Scholarship
      Winner
      My parents have always strived for excellence in themselves and our family. Growing up in Haiti, they had a hard time following their ambitions as there were many struggles and hardships, but that never stopped them in their pursuit for education and growth. My mother is the ninth out of eleven children. At just the age of twelve, my mom had to live with her older brother in order to acquire the education and lifestyle that wasn’t quite accessible to her at the family home in Thomassique. Though money was tight, she pursued knowledge with an endless hunger, pushing towards her goal of becoming a nurse. My father was equally passionate about the medical field, and though he lost his mother at a young age, he still found strength and support in his siblings, father, and community to become a doctor. My parents always tell me stories of Haiti. They tell me about the days when there was not much to eat but my grandmother would make sure to cook for the neighbors, the days where the electricity would go out but my father would use a lamp so he could continue to read, the days where they had to walk miles to get to school. My parents worked so hard in Haiti and even harder once they came to America, I can’t help but find the value of education through their story and their experiences. A college education helps grow and uplift members of the Haitian community, elevating us towards the God given greatness we are granted. My church was key in helping me serve my community. As part of both Adventurers and Pathfinders, the youth of my church went out to spread the word and love of God to the surrounding community. My favorite form of service to my community is feeding the less fortunate. My church hosts food drives every Wednesday and I love to aid not only my church but many other organizations that aim to help the homeless and hungry population in our community. My favorite organization is Rise Against Hunger, which specializes in sending sealed meals of rice, preserved veggies, nutrition packets, and many other things to countries suffering from hunger. It may be a bit ironic that this is my favorite organization as most of the shipments are sent to Haiti. Yet, sending care packages to countries like Haiti is only the first step in what I hope to achieve. Once I finish medical school, I hope to travel with my father to Haiti and other countries in the Caribbean to provide healthcare to those who need it. I have so many goals I want to achieve when it comes to aiding struggling countries, especially my own of Haiti, and I plan on using my education as a way to catapult me towards that goal. Serving my community and God with the support of my parents has led me to where I am today, a well-rounded student who graduated in the top 10% of her class and has an innate love for knowledge and growth. It’s poetic and sentimental to me that I graduated high school on May 18, 2022, or Haitian Flag Day. I am a living testament that no matter what society’s perception of Haitians may be, we are made of and for excellence. My parents are a living testament of the greatness of hard work and dedication to education and learning more about what you love to do. My family is a living testament of the glory God has blessed us with: a love and affinity for education and knowledge.