Ethan Green graduated Sonlight and started college in 2010. Each year he receives $2,500 from the Sonlight Scholarship Foundation for his studies.
Now a senior at Washington University in St. Louis, Ethan and his roommates founded an organization to help people with Parkinson's disease. They developed new software that will help people all over the world easily assess the progression of their disease. Their solution is currently twelve times faster and three times less expensive than other products on the market. They've already received development funds and plan to open up to outside investors soon.
All this from a student who used a literature-based curriculum through high school. I love the diversity of what Sonlight students go on to accomplish!
Years ago, I wanted to support Sonlight students as they pursued their callings. (I also wanted evidence as to how well Sonlight prepares students for college.) So we started the Sonlight Scholarship Foundation. Each year the scholarship committee carefully evaluates the stack of applicants, selects the winners, and awards $4,000 to $20,000 total to each.
If your Sonlight student will start college in 2014, he or she should apply now before the December 4 deadline. Your student can choose which category to apply for: one that prioritizes academic achievement, or one that prioritizes mission-mindedness, creativity and acts of kindness. (Learn about eligibility and meet the 2013 winners.)
I recently heard what some past scholarship winners are up to now. What fun to get these updates! After using Sonlight in their homeschool (at least for high school) these young adults have finished undergraduate studies and are following their callings. Past scholarship winners are now:
- At Harvard Law School after a stint with Teach for America
- Serving as a Naval Civil Engineer
- Pursuing a Ph.D. in Philosophy and writing a dissertation on Augustine of Hippo
- Serving as a US Marine Corps Ground Intelligence Officer
- Pursuing a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering
- Earning a Master's degree in Applied Linguistics with an emphasis in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (with plans to teach English abroad)
- Training in advanced linguistics in order to become a Bible translator
This quick list reminds me that Sonlight provides a broad education that teaches students how to think. That, in turn, prepares them for all sorts of careers (including the worthy task of possibly homeschooling their own children someday!). Every scholarship winner I've had the privilege to talk with is articulate, thoughtful, and clearly has a heart for the Lord. They all want to follow God's call in their lives.
So please keep Sonlight scholarships in mind. Whether or not your child has stellar test scores, if he or she has a heart for serving the Lord and wants to put a college education to good use, I'd encourage him or her to apply. (Read about eligibility here.)
Or just take the Scholarship winners as a reminder that Sonlight really does work. If your children seem "just average," or have plans other than college, you are still serving them well through giving them such a well-rounded and robust education.
Because after all, the point isn't to raise children who win scholarships. The goal is to raise children equipped to do whatever God calls them to. I pray that Sonlight is helping you do just that.
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