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Battelle-UCM Scholarships Awarded to Local High School Graduates

United Community Ministries, Inc. (UCM) and global research and development organization Battelle are pleased to announce the Battelle-UCM

(From left) Current and recent Battelle-UCM Scholarship recipients are pictured at a recent scholarship orientation and mentoring program with Regina B. Schofield, Battelle Director of Corporate Engagement and Education Outreach. From left: Faizan Tariq, 2016 Battelle-UCM Scholarship recipient, who is majoring in computer science engineering at Virginia Commonwealth University; Regina Schofield; Mount Vernon High School graduating senior Noorjahan Sheikh, 2017 Battelle-UCM Scholarship awardee; and 2016 awardee Imad Arouna, who is in his second year at Northern Virginia Community College studying Electrical Engineering. Not pictured: 2017 awardee Ana Villalobos, graduating senior at West Potomac High School. Courtesy photo.

Scholarship awardees for 2017. Funded by a grant from Battelle, the competitive college scholarships are designed to encourage economically-challenged Mount Vernon area high school seniors to pursue college studies in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Graduating seniors at Bryant Alternative High School, Mount Vernon High School, and West Potomac High School are eligible.

“Earning a college degree is key to economic opportunity and financial independence,” says UCM Executive Director Alison DeCourcey. “It means a significant increase in lifetime earnings. The advantages of studying in a STEM field are even more substantial. We appreciate our partnership with Battelle and its commitment to invest in access to opportunity. Their team truly understands the power of investing in young people so that they can create a better future for themselves. Together, we are truly changing lives.”

Scholarship candidates must demonstrate leadership, confidence in dealing with challenges, commitment to goals, and active participation in community service, extracurricular activities, or work. The 2017 Battelle-UCM Scholars are:

  • Noorjahan Sheikh graduated from Mount Vernon High School and will attend Virginia Commonwealth University to study biology with the goal to become an emergency room physician.
  • Ana Villalobos graduated from West Potomac High School and will attend Virginia Commonwealth University to pursue her dream to become a dentist.

“Through their volunteerism and hard work, these students have invested in their futures,” said Regina Schofield, Director of Corporate Engagement and Education Outreach at Battelle. “We are proud to match that investment with our own contribution and wish them great success in STEM.”


The Battelle-UCM Scholarship program was initiated in 2014. Scholarship awardees are invited to interact with past recipients in supportive focus groups, including mentoring opportunities. Over the years, Battelle’s generous contributions to UCM have supported other activities such as early childhood education to engage preschoolers in technology for future academic success in mathematics; and youth development, including out-of-school time activities focused on math and science.

About Battelle:

Battelle ( conducts research and development, designs and manufactures products, and delivers critical services for government and commercial customers at major technology centers and national laboratories around the world.. Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, since its founding in 1929, Battelle serves the national security, health and life sciences, and energy and environmental industries.

About United Community Ministries

United Community Ministries is a community-based nonprofit offering comprehensive programs and services for vulnerable children, youth, and families in Southeastern Fairfax County. UCM provides a vital connection between people in need and the people committed to helping them thrive. Services include counseling and referrals, emergency assistance, supplemental food, early care and learning, after-school and leadership programs at neighborhood community centers, ELS and citizenship classes, and parent education. Learn more at


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