PBSC student awarded $40,000 transfer scholarship
Palm Beach State College honors student Vinicius Wagner has been chosen as one of only 47 recipients nationwide for the 2018 Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship.
The highly competitive scholarship provides Wagner with up to $40,000 annually for a maximum of three years to complete his bachelor’s degree.
Wagner is currently completing a 16-week paid internship sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy at Princeton University. He was told the good news Thursday via Skype with PBSC President Ava L. Parker, J.D., Honors College Manager Marcella Montesinos, Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Roger Yohe, Dean of Curriculum Velmarie Albertini and Professor Nicholas LaRocca, among others.
“This means the world to me,” Wagner said. “I believe being a scholar expands the horizon of the responsibility that you have to your community. You can guarantee I will make the most of this opportunity.”
Wagner, a Dr. Floyd F. Koch Honors College student plans to graduate this spring with his Associate in Arts degree. The tenth PBSC student to receive the scholarship, he has set his sights on going to Princeton University this fall. Since 1990, Princeton has not admitted transfer students until now. He hopes to be one of those new students.
Wagner, 23, was among nearly 2,500 students who applied for the Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship. The foundation evaluated each submission based on academic ability, persistence, leadership and service to others.
Montesinos said she is proud that Wagner’s hard work has paid off. “Vinicius is a wonderful and talented young man who has gone above and beyond as a student. We are so thrilled that he is being recognized by the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and know that he will one day have a very successful career.”
In addition to the monetary award, Wagner will receive comprehensive educational advising from foundation staff to guide him through the processes of transitioning to a four-year school and preparing for his career. The foundation will additionally provide opportunities for internships, study abroad and graduate school funding, as well as connection to a thriving network of 2,300 fellow Cooke Scholars and alumni.
This summer, he will participate in a 10-week paid internship as part of the LIGO Summer Undergraduate Research Program. The intensive summer program takes place each year at the California Institute of Technology or one of the LIGO observatory sites, funded in part through the Research Experiences for Undergraduates program of the National Science Foundation. During the internship, he will work on projects to detect gravitational waves.
For more information on the Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship Program, visit www.jkcf.org/scholarship-programs.