“And this is every year?” Interboro High School guidance counselor Jasmine Woodson asked, pointing to the figure on one of Brianna Maddonni’s scholarship offers.
“Yes,” she replied.
Maddonni has been accepted to 18 schools and has been offered $1.09 million in scholarships combined.
“I revised my college essay several times, and I applied to all the scholarships that I could, and if they had an honors college I applied to the honors college,” she explained.
Maddonni has a 4.0 GPA. She plays varsity lacrosse and works two jobs. In her free time, she coaches youth sports and applies for scholarships, of course.
“Students think they’re not going to get them, so there’s a lot of scholarships that are available to students that they don’t know about because they don’t try,” said Woodson.
While Maddonni’s grades are exceptional and her extracurriculars speak for themselves, she thinks what really set her apart was her essay. That’s where she knew she had a story worth hearing.
“If somebody’s walking in front of me and they’re trying to talk to me when I’m behind them, I can’t hear a word they say,” explained Maddonni, who has genetic hearing loss and admits for a long time she didn’t want to wear her hearing aid.
“I was afraid of what everybody else would think of me since not everybody had them, so I would strain myself to hear the teacher so that I didn’t have to wear them,” she said.
When she began to advocate for herself, speak up when she was struggling, and wearing her aids, her academic career took off.
“It just feels like all my hard work really paid off,” she said.
As for revealing what school she’s going to choose?
“If I knew I would do it!” she laughed.
That’s still the million-dollar question.
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