The summer going into sophomore year my family found out that FAFSA would not be giving me as much aid as the year before. Coming from a family who really relies on the financial aid in order to attend school made this news heartbreaking. We did not know where our money would come from to pay the remaining amount of tuition I would have. If we could not find the money, I would have to leave Saint Ben’s and go back to Colorado for school.
We looked into our budget to see if we could find room to allow me to continue my education at my favorite school. After trying to tie strings together it ended up that we were $2500 dollars away from making it so that I could return to CSB. If we could not come up with the $2500 dollars then I would have to board a plane home, which broke my heart. I felt as though I couldn’t give up on my dreams so I decided to contact financial aid in one last stitch effort. I wanted to see if any of the kind souls who worked in the financial aid office knew of any scholarships still available.
I was blessed by the opportunity to meet with one on the financial aid representatives who had me tell her my life story in order to get to know me, and the characteristics of my life that may qualify for any sort of scholarship. Flash forward a couple weeks later. The financial aid representative contacted me with a match to a scholarship! It just so happened that there is a scholarship foundation by the McNicholas family based in Colorado. They had the opportunity to hear my story from the representative and decided that they would grant me $2500 that my family needed.
My family and I were brought to tears over this news. To the McNicholas family, they gifted me money, but to me they gave me the biggest gift I could receive: a chance to finish school and pursue my dreams. Without the McNicholas scholarship I would not be here, and be able to tell this story, and for that I will always be grateful. I am now a senior here at the College of Saint Benedict getting ready for student teaching in the spring. Each time I have a warm heart in class, walking around campus, or teaching students, I remember that I owe that feeling to the generosity of the McNicholas family. For without them, my dreams would not be getting the chance to come true.
Anne H. ’16 | Aurora, Colo.