Madonna Gadelseed graduated in the Spring of 2016. Currently, she is continuing her education at the Northern Virginia Community College campus in Manassas, Virginia.
Madonna received two scholarships. The Rotary Club of Herndon gave her $2,000 scholarship, and the Centreville Presbyterian Church Community Service awarded her a $1,750 scholarship.
With these two scholarships she was able to pursue her interest in bio-science at NOVA. The scholarships covered her first two semesters in college. She is very appreciative of the Mountain View staff and teachers because they gave her hope, and “changed her life completely,” she says. One main person that impacted her life was her guidance counselor, Mr. Todd, who said, “Madonna just had a genuine interest in learning and that’s why she perused the dental program at Chantilly High. And I believe that’s why she will continue to do well in college.”
Working 40 hours a week, school in the morning, work in the evening and double shifts on Saturday and Sunday didn’t leave much time for anything else, but Reynaldo Gonzalez wanted to give back to the school he believed had given him so much. Lessons about persistence, accepting challenge, and hard work were just part of the education he received here. Rey also learned his strengths and weaknesses, his love of math and his challenge with History. Enjoying math and doing well provided him with one avenue to give back by tutoring fellow students who couldn’t count math among their strengths. Being selected for the Mountain View Student Congress provided another way. Student Congress representatives met regularly to confer and collaborate on issues involving the school. Students not only helped identify the issues but worked with administration on solutions. Rey understood the important role he could play in this forum to make the school a better place for everyone. His counselor said he was one of best scholarship candidates he had had. The Herndon Rotary applauds Rey’s commitment to his school and fellow students and is happy to award him this scholarship.
“Service Above Self” is the motto of Rotary Clubs throughout the world, and Jada Jones believes these three words represent her mindset as well. In her Herndon Rotary scholarship essay she wrote “…giving more than receiving will unlock many opportunities, not just for myself, but for others also.” Her experiences with a small informal group, called the Girls Group, taught her the importance of community support, and her experience with Mountain View’s Student Congress allowed her to witness and participate in a process that worked to improve the entire school community. What she has learned through her experiences and service with these groups can be summed up by a quotation she included in her essay. “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” The Herndon Rotary Club is pleased to be able to further Jada’s “giving-back” with this certification scholarship beginning her career path leading to pediatric nursing.
Douglas Zambrana did not have an easy time in high school. His mother was diagnosed with cancer and the family had to travel back and forth to Bolivia for her to receive medical treatment and support from her family. The travel between school systems caused an interruption in Douglas’s education and he lost a full year of school, but he never lost sight of his goal of graduating from high school. Douglas’s English teacher, Mr. Johnson, describes Douglas as the most focused and independently driven student he has taught this school year. Douglas’s work was top quality and his character more than matches that. Ms. Hoffman, Douglas’s Algebra 2 teacher said that Douglas is a model student. He demonstrated intellectual ability, perseverance and maturity in his approach to his studies despite challenging personal circumstances. Douglas’s counselor states she has no doubt that Douglas will achieve any goal he sets for himself. He is a role model as someone who has faced life’s adversities and learned compassion and perseverance. This year Douglas’s mother lost her battle with cancer. Douglas intends to become an engineer, but also seeks to find a cure for cancer. This scholarship will enable Douglas to start his journey to fulfill both of those goals.