10 San Diego County Changemakers Receive First-Ever Sunflower Scholarships
from Chelsea’s Light Foundation
Winners Surprised with Four Years of Scholarship Support Totaling $60,000
SAN DIEGO, Calif. – A “service over self” ethic coupled with academic success today earned 10 San Diego County high school students the first-ever Sunflower Scholarships from Chelsea’s Light Foundation. The Sunflower Scholarship Class of 2011, also now known as the newest Chelsea’s Light changemakers, represents a wide geographic swath from Escondido to Chula Vista, and an array of colleges including Wake Forest, SDSU, Harvard and UCLA. A total of $60,500 will be awarded to these 10 students over the next four years.
Just under 300 students from 58 San Diego County high schools applied for the 10 scholarships, with the largest number of applicants coming from the Preuss School UCSD (three of the 10 winners were from Preuss). Every application was personally reviewed by Kelly and Brent King who established Chelsea’s Light Foundation last year in honor of their daughter Chelsea.
“Just as Chelsea was one of a kind and lived an extraordinary life, these teenagers are unique, visionary and benevolent towards others,” said Kelly King. “They value individuality and embrace diversity in activities, relationships and points of view. Each one is the epitome of a Chelsea’s Light changemaker.”
Winning the singular “Sparkle” scholarship of $10,000 was Corynn Kolberg from Escondido High School. In addition to maintaining a 4.3 GPA and playing varsity water polo, she served as chapter president of Best Buddies which fosters friendships with people with intellectual disabilities. Active with the Surfrider Foundation and Rotary Youth Leadership Association, Kolberg will attend Wake Forest University this September. The nine other scholarship winners who each received $2,000 were:
· Jenna Belknap/Poway/UCLA
· Micheal Comaduran/Preuss /UCLA
· Anthony Gomez/Eastlake/Pomona College
· Fatima Haghi-Mohamed/Preuss/UCSD
· Kathleen Hoskins/High Tech High Chula Vista/UCSB
· Lyle Ikeuchi/Poway/University of New Mexico
· Kelsey Miller/La Jolla Country Day/Harvard University
· Jocelyn Noubouphasavanh/Preuss/UC Berkeley
· Katie Wrieden/Helix Charter/Seattle University
All 10 winners were surprised to learn at today’s Sunflower Scholarship awards event that they will receive ongoing scholarship monies from Chelsea’s Light in each of the subsequent three years if they remain in college. Kolberg will receive an additional $10,000 for a total of $20,000; the other winners will receive an additional $2,500 for a total of $4,500 each. Another surprise revealed today were new Sony Vaio laptops for each student donated by Sony Electronics.
Of the nearly 300 applicants, following an application review process 20 semi-finalists were interviewed by a community-based panel and the 10 finalists were subsequently interviewed by the Kings and Chelsea’s Light leadership.
The Sunflower Scholarship Fund was established to reflect the attributes which Chelsea King embodied as a young citizen and student at Poway High School. She was extremely diligent, involved in a variety of school activities, had a passion for volunteering in her community, believed in the power of change and dreamed of making the world a better place.
The Chelsea’s Light Sunflower Scholarship Fund is closely connected to the success of the “Finish Chelsea’s Run” 5K fundraising event. Proceeds from the inaugural run totaled $110,000 resulting from a turnout of 5,000 participants and financial sponsorship from Bridgepoint Education, Clark Cares Foundation and Wells Fargo Mortgage. Finish Chelsea’s Run is already confirmed to take place March 3, 2012 in Balboa Park.
Based in San Diego, Chelsea’s Light Foundation was created in 2010 by Kelly and Brent in honor of their daughter Chelsea King. The mission of the all-volunteer organization is to unite and lead people who are passionate about protecting children and inspiring positive change in their communities. In its first year, Chelsea’s Light Foundation was instrumental in the passage of California’s Chelsea’s Law, hosted the 5,000-person Finish Chelsea’s Run 5K and awarded $60,000 in college scholarships to change-minded high school students. Information and updates provided at facebook/chelseaslight.com.
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