Scholarships Awarded in Our Own School


Kennedy Kern, Content Creator

Senior year can mean many things, but scholarships are one of the biggest. Whether it be academic, sport, or need-based, every scholarship is an accomplishment. However, full-ride scholarships? That is something to talk about. Today I am covering two Great Bend High students who have received full ride scholarships.

“Give Something Back (Give Back) provides college scholarships and mentoring to students who have faced economic hardship and other adversities such as foster care or the incarceration of a parent,” (Give Back). Tania Molina is the recipient of the Give Back scholarship which helps “scholars participate in programming and receive coaching throughout high school to prepare them for an education and a career. We help students explore different career opportunities and get hands-on experience while in high school. Our Scholars build a career-based educational plan and we help them get the post-secondary education they will need to be successful in that career,” (Give Back).

She actually received this scholarship way back in freshman year and the mentors at Give Back have been helping her since; and after she graduates, she will have a full ride to Wichita State University. Molina said, “I first heard about it through the TVs in the lunch room. Since one of the schools they offer full rides to is WSU, I was really interested so I applied for it. I know a lot of people did not apply to it because not everyone could get it, since only around 30 people in KS could get it, it was crazy to be one of those few.” This shows that you should apply to any scholarship, even if you don’t think you will get it, because you might. But it might not be easy.

“I first had to attend a meeting where they explained the scholarship and the process, this was in October 2018, we had to put in some info and our future plans for the future, and what we would like to study. After a month or so they would reach out to us to tell us about the next step, of the 10 that attended the meeting, only 4 were asked to continue, and I was one of them. We had to then fill in more papers and Information, write essays, and do a final interviews. We would later then get an email informing us if we were finalists for the scholarship, only 3 of us made it to the finals. For the final step, they invited us to a dinner at Wichita, and at that dinner they would select who of the finalists got the scholarship. At the dinner they told us that all of us actually got the scholarship, so all 30 finalists got full rides to 4 universities and could choose one of their choice. Out of great bend high school, my brother, cousin and I got the scholarship. It was nice that we all could share that great experience together,” Molina said. If a foundation is giving full ride scholarships, it most likely will require a little more work, but it will be well worth it.

Scholarships like this can change someone’s life. Someone who might have been unable to afford a university, now can go without fear of living in debt. “The Give Back Scholarship is a great opportunity to me. It taught me how expensive college really is, and how life changing it can be to get a full ride to my dream school. The sponsors are all really nice, and Lydia and Katie (the Kansas directors of the program) are really nice and funny. Give means almost the world to me, it changed my life and will straighten my future,” said Molina.

Another student, Gabriella Reyes, received not only a full-ride scholarship, but to an out-of-state school. Gaby received the Questbridge scholarship and will be attending Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. College is expensive enough as it is, let alone going 1,500 miles away. “QuestBridge designs and builds programs for talented low-income students to access and navigate exceptional educational and life opportunities. QuestBridge recruits, develops, and supports motivated low-income students – beginning in high school through college to their early career – to be successful at America’s best colleges, graduate schools, and companies,” (Questbridge).

Gaby “heard about QuestBridge from my sister. She was matched to Tufts University in 2017 when she was a high school senior,” she said. Both her and her sister were “matched” to schools only 130 miles from each other. The way Questbridge works is you have to apply, then you have to be selected as a finalist. From there, you must rank the top schools of your choice. Then your schools that you ranked will look at you and decide if they want you. If the answer is yes, you will be “matched” to that school. Being matched is binding because once you are matched, you HAVE to attend, so this scholarship is a big commitment. Gaby said, “I had to write essays, get recommendation letters, and figure out how to do the FAFSA. Aside from that, I had to make sure to just be a good student all throughout high school. Even as a freshman, I knew that I had to set myself up to be a good candidate for QuestBridge when the time came. Taking the harder classes, maintaining a high GPA, going to the ACT study sessions offered by Ms. Wolters, and being involved in the community was just a small part of my preparation to be an applicant.”

“To me, QuestBridge is a huge opportunity to get the education that I want. Without it, I would not have been able to even consider going to an out of state college. Not only that, QuestBridge is a community of first gen and low income students nationwide. Having that support from people that understand my situation is incredibly important to me. I had access to many resources because of the community, including ACT/SAT prep, APUSH test prep, and other scholarships/programs,” said Gaby.

Scholarships like this are life changing, so get out there and apply to every scholarship you can find. You never know, you just might get a full ride to your dream school.



About Us – Give Back College Scholarship and Mentoring Program. Give Something Back. (n.d.). Retrieved December 13, 2021, from

Mission & Vision. QuestBridge. (n.d.). Retrieved December 13, 2021, from