Alexandria, Va. — In a press release issued this morning, The Scholarship Fund of Alexandria (SFA) announced it awarded $460,000 in scholarships to 170 T.C. Williams High School Class of 2019 students to support their college education.
This is the largest amount awarded to first-year scholarship recipients in the organization’s 33-year history. More than half of the scholarship recipients will be the first in their family to attend college.
The scholarships will support students with financial need and help them attend college. Many students are eligible to receive additional scholarship support through all four years of college. The SFA also awards more than $500,000 in renewal scholarships annually.
“We are so very grateful to everyone here who has financially supported our students, believed in our students, and helped make college possible for local Alexandria students in need. While this is the largest amount we have ever awarded, it is important to remember that our continued support for students like these is critical in helping ensure that college can be possible for all T.C. Williams students despite their financial need or hardship,” said SFA Board Chair Priscilla Goodwin.
Of the 170 students receiving scholarships, a number are heading to Harvard University, Yale University, the University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, Vanderbilt, Northern Virginia Community College and Georgetown University. They will be going on to major in criminology, psychology, cinematography, physics and business among other subjects next year.
“These scholarships change lives…forever. This is my favorite night of the year, when all of our bright, hard-working students — more than half of them the first in their family to attend college — are celebrated for their academic achievements and the amazing futures that lie ahead of them. It is such a meaningful and poignant moment when I see our students stand side by side with the people who support their scholarships and make college possible for them,” said SFA Executive Director Beth Lovain.
Divine Tsasa Nzita, recipient of the T.C. Williams Class of 1989 Scholarship, received a $20,000 scholarship award over four years. Divine, who is originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo and is Student Government President at T.C. Williams, will begin her college career at Northern Virginia Community College where she plans to study International Relations with a minor in French and Korean.
“I cannot begin to express how grateful we are for being given this chance to advance our education beyond high school. Having the support of The Scholarship Fund and all of its donors, and the support of T.C. Williams, is a priceless gift,” she told the audience on Wednesday evening.
Individual community supporters and local business leaders who provided the funding for the scholarships joined the recipients on stage during the 2019 SFA Scholarship Awards Ceremony.
The SFA is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization providing scholarships and financial aid advising to Alexandria City Public School students. Since 1986, SFA has awarded $16.5 million in scholarships, making college dreams come true for 4,750 students.
2019 Scholarship Recipient Highlights:
Maryam Abdou – Recipient of the Loti Dunn Scholarship, has received a $20,000 scholarship over four years to study economics at Georgetown University. Maryam, whose family is Egyptian, wants to use her economics degree to help those around the world who are less fortunate.
Danya Adam – Recipient of the T.C. Williams Class of 1989 Scholarship, has received a $20,000 scholarship over four years to attend Vanderbilt University. Danya is the first generation in her family to attend college. Her father came to the U.S. from Sudan in the 1980s to build a better life for himself and his family.
Syed Tanzim Al Muhtasin – Recipient of the 1971 Titans Scholarship, has received a $12,000 scholarship over four years to attend The College of William and Mary. Syed, the first generation in his family to attend college, is majoring in chemistry on a pre-dental track. He wants to serve his community in the future by providing dental care to low-income families.
Full List of 2019 Scholarship Recipients:
Syed Tanzim Al Muhtasin
Maria Areyan Hernandez
Joshua Del Orbe
Maame Akosua Osei-Bonsu
Mireida Perez Molina
Monica Perez Morales
Marielle Claire Serrona
Divine Tsasa Nzita