There is one thing you need to know when you live on the Northside … North Denverites help North Denverites. And this year is no different: the North Denver community has come up with almost $100,000 in scholarships for North High School seniors.
The North Side High School Alumni Scholarship Foundation (NSHASF) is providing 44 scholarships ranging in value from $2,000 to $8,000. These scholarships award students’ talents and efforts in areas such as music, art, theater, sports, academics, STEM, ROTC, paid employment, true grit, and overcoming obstacles. In 2021, the committee awarded $93,023 in scholarships to various North High students. This year, they are giving away $98,364. But don’t wait—the deadline to apply is March 25, 2022.
This program relies on community volunteers and donors in order to further develop and maintain the process. Elisa Cohen, the scholarship chairman, says, “It is incredibly inspiring to read the students’ essays and to be able to help them financially meet their future goals. This work proves to me our future is strong when we support our youth.”
Weeks of effort are poured into scouring these essays and deliberating over the merits of each winner, but for students, the application takes only a few hours. In order to apply, students from both North High School and the North High School Engagement Center must go to www.goingmerry.com and register for a free account. From there, students can apply for the scholarships. Each application requires an essay about the role North High School has played in the student’s development as well as questions specifically tailored to each of the scholarships. After applying, all application information will be saved online, making it easy to apply to other scholarship opportunities!
School guidance or career counselors can also offer helpful hints and guidance in regard to the North High School scholarship and other scholarship opportunities. Zulema Sierra is the Future Center counselor at North High School and is a large reason I and many of my peers have been able to achieve many of our dreams. Please don’t be afraid to ask for help! A little courage will go a long way. These scholarship systems and lovely staff members are there to help in any way they can.
Many colleges have their own institutional scholarships available through their application process or their home portal. Others will gauge financial need through things like the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or CSS profile. FAFSA deadlines will typically vary by university, but if you have not done it yet, don’t delay. The funding pool dwindles the later you apply.
Scholarship deadlines fluctuate based on schooling, state, and if they are publicly or privately funded. However, sites such as Going Merry, Scholarship.com, Chegg, Cappex, Niche, and many others offer a plethora of information and scholarships.
Just as the moon pulls the tides, these scholarships can change the course of your life forever. I know this process is daunting, trust me I do. However, I am where I am today with the help from our community, my education, and my scholarships. It is never too late to start applying, even if you don’t know what you want to do yet. The best piece of advice I can give is to reach as high and as far as you can;you’ll be surprised who is willing to help lift you up. By this May, high school seniors will be on the path towards the rest of their lives. By this May, you will all be saying your farewells. But, most importantly, from today until May and every day after, you will know that no matter what you did you gave it your all; and that if you ever fall you’ll always have North Denver to help you back on your feet again.
Shaina Walsh is a 2021 graduate of North High School and is now attending Fordham University in New York.