Every senior who plans to attend college knows the struggle of trying to find money to pay for it. It’s a long, tedious, and stressful process to say the least. There is a scholarship called “Act Six,” which offers a full ride to one of the program’s partner schools. Last year, PMA had one winner, Nathaniel Ortega. He currently attends Taylor University, a Christian college. This year, however, there are two winners from PMA, seniors Destiny Ortega and Jazzlyn Gavina who will also attend Taylor in the fall.
Any scholarship that seniors apply for requires some type of work and takes patience. The “Act Six” scholarship process was no different.
“Well, the process was very long. I had to write about four essays mostly about my academics, leadership and faith. After that we had to be chosen for round/phase ll, phase ll consisted of group dynamics. Which is about forty people in a room and five spectators to see how we interact and take leadership roles within the other group of people. Lastly we had to be chosen for round three, in round three we had to go to the Taylor campus and write an essay about a sermon on MLK, and interview with staff from Taylor. About two weeks later we found out if we made it or not,” said Ortega.
The scholarship is similar to the “Posse Foundation” scholarship because of the monetary benefits but also the sense of being familiar with others who have also won the scholarship for four years. This group of people is called your “cadre.” Also, with this scholarship, it also doesn’t matter what your EFC (expected family contribution) is, if you stand out academically and personality wise, you earn the scholarship.
“I feel like it is very similar in terms of meeting with your group of other scholars that were awarded the same thing you got and you feel a sense of belonging. It’s a full need scholarship so everything basically gets paid for even for me since I didn’t qualify for FAFSA since my income is too high,” said Gavina.
Every senior would love to have the opportunity to attend their first choice college. Unfortunately, this isn’t possible for everyone, but good things can still come out of it. Gavina is an example of exactly this.
“I was really set on going to Loyola University at Chicago since my freshman year since it was a medical university but after experiencing Taylor, it became my second choice if I didn’t go to Loyola because it was 30k a year,” said Gavina.
On the other hand, Taylor was Ortega’s first choice.
“Everything that comes with Taylor beats other schools in my opinion,” said Ortega.
With every college decision, there are advantages and disadvantages that either pull or push a student away from the school.
“At Taylor we are treated as adults, there is no curfew or leaving campus rules. The down side is having to live on campus for 4 years, we aren’t allowed to rent out a home or apartment,” said Ortega.
Although everything isn’t ideal, being able to receive a full ride scholarship is a blessing. It helps everyone in a different way. Whether if it’s money, preference or academics wise, it will help them decide where they’d like to spend the next four years.