Xuan Ngyuen - 2005 Recipient
My three years in high school were some of the most difficult times in my life. I came with my parents to the United States in my sophomore year. Because of the new environment, we had to confront many obstacles such as the new language as well as the financial instability. In spite of my family's financial situation, I had always embraced a dream of going to college to pursue a higher education. The moment I heard about the Zeolite Scholarship which was offered to outstanding Mather seniors this gave light to my hope. I immediately grasped the chance and was lucky to become one of the three winners. Since I received the scholarship, I felt very confident in myself and less concerned about the financial issue. I continued to carry out my goal by applying to the University of Illinois at Chicago and was fortunate again to be accepted. Currently I am a chemistry-majored junior at UIC and my future plan is to pursue the Doctor of Pharmacy degree to become a pharmacist.
Coming to the United States five and a half years ago at the age of fifteen, I was overwhelmed with hopes and dreams. Before this arrival, I had pictured America in my mind as a land of wealth and opportunities. As I first stepped on this land, I set my determination not to miss any chance to learn and succeed. However, the road to success is always laid with challenges and hardships. There are always barriers as one migrates from one country to another. In the first few years, my family and I had to confront two major obstacles, which were the language difference and the financial stability. Because of her age and her new language, my mom had difficulty finding a job. My dad was fortunate enough to earn a position as a worker in a jewelry company where he received little salary to support the whole family. This financial restraint did not become a major issue until my senior year in high school when I had to decide whether I should go to college. It was my dream to continue my education at the college level in America. Unfortunately my family's financial situation had blurred this dream because I was afraid that we would not be able to afford all college expenses. While in despair, I heard about the Zeolite Scholarship, which was offered to Mather seniors who were going to go to college. I finally applied to the University of Illinois at Chicago and was lucky to be accepted.
As time passed by, my determination has not changed: I do not want to miss any opportunity to learn and succeed. As a result, I have done quite well in all of the courses that I have taken so far and maintained a Grade Point Average of 4.0 on the scale of 4.0. I have been constantly on the Dean's List (which is the list of well-done students who have a G.P.A. of 3.5 and above) every semester. Throughout the past few years in college, I have set my goal to become a pharmacist. Therefore, this year I am trying to apply to several pharmacy schools for the Doctor of Pharmacy degree program. Hopefully I can be accepted into the program for the following academic year and continue another four years of education.
What I have achieved on my academic path to this day was the result of the help of many people, especially the generous donors of the Zeolite Scholarship. Without the aid from the Zeolites, I would have had more difficulty pursuing a higher-level education. The scholarship has not only lightened my burden for college's expenditure but also served as a spiritual support for me. I owe a deep appreciation to all the members of the Zeolites and am very moved and inspired by their generosity and kindness.