DeLand High recently received word that IB senior, Sophia Abolfathi is a semifinalist for the Cooke College Scholarship Program. She is one of only two senior in Volusia County to qualify for this award. Overall she is part of a very selective pool of only 496 high school seniors named as semifinalists.

This highly selective scholarship provided exceptionally talented students who have financial need with up to $40,000 annually for four year of college, to enable them to attend a top-performing college of university.

The semifinalists were chosen from a pool of 5,860 applicants and represent 428 different high schools. Every year, around 60 students are chosen for the scholarship. The 2021 Cooke College Scholarship recipients will be announced in April.

“These semifinalists embody determination and resilience as they navigate finishing high school during one of the most difficult and unprecedented times in American history,” said Executive Director Seppy Basili. “In the midst of these challenging times, we remain deeply committed to ensuring that students have the opportunity to access an education and reach their fullest potential. I am honored to recognize these students for their hard work and achievements.” 

Students applied from all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, Northern Marianas, the Virgin Islands, and American Samoa. A list of the semifinalists can be found below. 

Cooke College Scholars are selected based on exceptional academic ability and achievement, financial need, persistence, and leadership. Students must be current high school seniors residing in the United States. Scholarships are awarded without respect to religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, citizenship status, geographic region, race, or ethnicity.