West Valley students win big with elite scholarships
College scholarships are one of the ways many students pay for college. This year, students at Granger and Hunter High Schools received more than $2 million in scholarship money to help pay for school.
Granger students received a record $1.758, 630.00 in scholarship money this year with 30 of those awards being more than $20,000.
Senior class officer and valedictorian Christopher Cahoon was awarded the prestigious Eliot Scholarship from Washington University in St. Louis, Miss. for $191,800. Another large award was Anand Singh, who received the Gates Millennium scholarship for $60,000.
“I’m amazed at the number of kids that received awards this year,” said Granger counselor James Babcock. “We had so many awards[(new scholarships that students at Granger had never won before] that were new to the school this year, like Christopher. It’s amazing to see our students being recognized with these amazing opportunities.”
Babcock said Anand has been very involved at Granger during his high school career. He was a Sterling Scholar this year and has been involved in student government. Babcock said Anand has always been a go-getter both at school and in every aspect of his life.
Brandy Oliver, another counselor at Granger, has worked closely with Christopher over the years. She said he has always been a part of his community and very involved with school. Not only was he awarded the scholarship, he also received early entrance from Washington University. Oliver said students can only apply to one school for early entry.
“It’s nice to know that so many Granger students are going to go out and make an impact on our world, thanks to these opportunities,” Babcock said.
Hunter students received more than $630,000 in scholarship money this year with several students earning full ride tuition to both in-state and out-of-state colleges. Mikaela Mokofisi is a counselor at Hunter and has been helping the students apply for awards this year.
“It’s been great helping the students this year. We had so many first-generation college-bound seniors that won awards,” she said.
Senior Latai Sotele won the University of Utah-Utah Opportunity Scholarship. Mokofisi said there are only 20 of the Utah Opportunity Scholarships available in the state, and to have several recipients at Hunter was a big accomplishment.
Patisepa Tatafu won several full-ride scholarships to Salt Lake Community College and to the University of Utah. She plans to get a teaching degree. Mokofisi said she’s been working with Patisepa over the years and to see her working toward her goal is very rewarding.
Mokofisi said the number of students that applied for scholarships this year is up and that many of them will be the first person in their family to go to college.