Edgar, a 2015 graduate of Holland High School, is majoring in Computer Science at Western Michigan University.
Going to college wasn’t something Edgar thought much about, and his grades reflected that. His lack of interest almost derailed any possibility of college after high school — and then, in his junior year, Edgar said, “I woke up.”
What woke him up? Holland High in conjunction with Grand Rapids Junior College offered courses that gave Edgar actual college credit. In those classes his teachers told their stories, spoke of how they dreamed of a college education and the possibilities for their future.
“I realized,” Edgar said, “that if I didn’t grow up, didn’t start to apply myself , I had no future.”
He made a 180 degree turn in his life that junior year. His grades shot up, his GPA became college acceptable, and he began to dream, though he had real doubts. Feared perhaps it was too late to earn scholarships that would make college possible.
The College Adviser at Holland High, Mr. Raul Jimenez, recommended Edgar for the Holland/Zeeland Promise scholarship but Edgar didn’t really dare to believe he might be selected. “l almost didn’t attend the Honors convocation,” Edgar said. “I knew there were some pretty accomplished people going for the scholarship. I didn’t want to feel disappointed when I didn’t hear my name called.”
And then, his name was called!
Mr. Raul Jimenez, Edgar’s adviser at Holland High School had this to say about Edgar:
“Edgar is grateful for every single opportunity he is granted. He is a selfless and hard-working young man and a true pleasure to be around. Edgar does not sit around and wait for opportunity to come knocking. He is tenacious young man who sets out to open doors for himself and, as he gets ready to pursue higher education, I am sure he will continue to seek and seize opportunity, as well as continue to work to improve conditions for those around him.”
What did receiving the H/Z Promise Scholarship mean to Edgar?
“There would have been so many more obstacles. Sometimes I think others deserved this scholarship more than I did. But now that I’ve been chosen — I need to take advantage of this great opportunity.”
Edgar’s advice to high school students:
“Even when you feel doubt — don’t let it overwhelm you, do something about it. Self-confidence grows if you don’t let doubts grow.”
To learn more about the Holland/Zeeland Promise Scholarship, visit www.cfhz.org/hzpromise