Self-Help Shares

Hope for the Future: Meet our 2021 Scholarship Winners

By staff
  | Jul 07, 2021

Scholarship 2021 banner

We are delighted to announce this year's Self-Help Scholarship winners! Each Self-Help branch had an opportunity to award a scholarship to a local student who demonstrated a commitment to service and volunteerism. In line with our mission, we seek students who are not only focused on academics and leadership, but who also want to help make the world a better place. Self-Help awards $1,000 to each student selected, paid directly to the their school to cover tuition or other expenses.

Meet our 2021 winners, listed by location:


Apopka, FL – Lidia Galeas


Lidia attends Stetson University. She wants to be a Rural Physician to serve in communities that lack access to social and health care resources. She volunteers at Hope Community Center, Shepherd’s Hope Clinic, Advent Health, Hispanic Health Initiatives and Camp Boggy Creek.


Asheville, NC – Greta Kjellquist


Greta plans to attend Fordham University. She volunteers for Teen Court, Manna Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity and Hanger Hall Math Camps. Volunteering for Teen Court fueled her desire to become an attorney to defend juveniles and reform the system.


Asheville, NC (South Asheville) – Molly Malachowski


Molly currently attends the University of NC at Charlotte. She studies elementary education and wants to be a fourth grade teacher in North Carolina. Molly has served food at the Haywood Street Congregation as well as volunteering at the NC Arboretum Summer Camp.


Brevard, NC – Shade Wilbanks


Shade attends the University of Mount Olive. She is studying agricultural education and wants to teach high school agriculture. Shade volunteers for the Cattleman’s Association, Headwaters Outfitters and the University of Mount Olive.


Charlotte, NC (Beatties Ford Rd.) – Simon Getahun


Simon is currently attending Appalachian State University, planning to transfer to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He volunteers at the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, Hospitality House of Charlotte, and the Independence Regional Library. His goal is to become a software engineer that develops computer games and runs network control systems for large companies.


Charlotte, NC (Providence Rd.) – Rachel Choffin


Rachel plans to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has volunteered for the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte, Lunches for Local Soup Kitchens, Atrium Healthcare and the Freedom School (Shalom Park). Rachel’s career goal is to become a physician’s assistant or medical doctor.


Columbia, SC (Bush River Rd.) – DeMarcus Hammond


DeMarcus plans to attend South Carolina State University for electrical engineering. His long-term goals are to be an electrical engineer for a Fortune 500 company or in the military. He volunteers for the Edgewood Foundation and Community Center, Sigma Phi Beta Club and the WJ Keenan High School Adopt-the-Highway.


Columbia, SC (Federal Building) – Zaniya Williams


Zaniya is currently attending Johnson C. Smith University with a major in biology and a minor in dance. She serves her community by volunteering for Barbeee Dental, Prisma Health, a homeless shelter through her church, and she helped make it possible for people with special needs to attend the State Fair. Zaniya’s long-term goals are to become an orthodontist and dance Instructor.


Deland, FL – Hailey Arias


Hailey plans to attend Stetson University, and her ultimate ambition is to be a Supreme Court judge. Currently she is a DOSA Youth Pastoral Ministry member and SJBCC Church Youth Group Leader, and she volunteers at a food pantry.


Durham, NC (S. Mangum St.) – Ryan Byrd


Ryan plans to attend Queens University in Charlotte. To help the community, he volunteers for Reality Ministries, the Food Bank of Central/Eastern NC, Cams Clothes and the YMCA. His career goal is to work in human services and open his own business giving private swimming lessons.


Galax, VA - Adrianna Salyer


Adrianna plans to attend Marietta College with a major in biology/leadership and a minor in Spanish. She is a math and Spanish tutor, volunteers at the local recreation department, community clean up events, food and clothing drives, and for local sports organizations. Adrianna’s long-term goals are to become a bilingual dermatologist and have a local travel volleyball team as well as coach young athletes.


Greensboro, NC  – Rogelio Perez Montero


Rogelio plans to attend Guilford College in Greensboro to study international relations and pre-law. He has volunteered for Kaleideum North Science Museum, Hispanic League, El Buen Pastor and as a Spanish tutor. Rogelio’s long-term goal is to pursue a career in Immigration law.


Greenville, SC (Antrim Dr.) - Yaminah Ragwar-Hayes


Yaminah plans to attend Webster University to study biology and psychology. Her long-term career goal is to be a mental health professional. She hopes to study abroad in Ghana and learn about barriers to psychological care and then return home to work where there is a shortage of mental health professionals.


Hendersonville, NC - Katie Robinson


Katie is currently attending Blue Ridge Community College where she studies Human Services Technology. Her community service consists of volunteering for WCCA and the community food project. Katies long-term goal is to advocate for women, children and families ( crisis intervention) and to get a master’s degree in family therapy and contribute to research in the counseling field.


Jacksonville, FL (JEA Tower) – Catherine Williams


Catherine plans to attend Florida State University to major in finance. Afterwards, she would like to get a job working in financial technology. Her community services consist of helping with food and clothing drives, food pantries and band performances for the community.


Jacksonville, FL (Kendall Town) – Parker Rossignol


Parker is a freshman at the University of Florida with double major in economics and political science. After he graduates he wants to begin a career in Washington on Capitol Hill as a staffer. He led a on-campus blood drive and an event to make dog toys for a shelter.


Jacksonville, FL (Westside) – Kellyn Hooker


Kellyn plans to attend the University of Florida, majoring in psychology and pre-pharm. Her long-term goals are to get her PharmD so she can serve her community. She volunteers at Flagler Hospital, Creekside High and Hacking Medical Resources.


Kinston, NC – Lintorion Grandy


Lintorion plans to attend North Carolina Central University with an education and Spanish Concentration. His long-term goal is to aid undocumented immigrants to obtain citizenship as an immigration attorney. Lintorion has volunteered for the Lenoir county Teen Court and participated in many church activities.


Laurinburg, NC – Natasha Villalobos


Natasha is attending Southeastern Community College and pursuing a degree in the nursing program with the goal of becoming an ER or NICU nurse. She volunteered for the Mass COVID 19 Vaccination Clinic held by Southeastern Community College and the local health department.


Lexington, NC – Hunter Austin


Hunter is attending Horry-Georgetown Technical College and pursuing a degree in film and theater production. He volunteers for the Lowe’s Hero Projects and at the Lexington Youth Theater.


Maiden – Aubree Ikard


Aubree plans to attend Catawba Valley Community College to major in social work. To serve her community she volunteers for Robbie Gives Back, Special Olympics, ECCCM, the Corner Table, Operation Christmas Child and Hart Square. Her long-term goal is to work as a social worker in a school system.


Morganton, NC – Yanira Cristobal


Yanira attends Lenior Rhyne University in the nursing program. She plans to be a labor and delivery nurse once she graduates. Yanira gives back to the community by helping the Starkey Hearing Foundation and Hands on Hickory and also by interning for Sweet and Savory Delights Bakery.


Old Fort, NC - Madison Harris


Madison plans to attend Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College to study criminal justice. Her long-term career goal is to work for the NC Department of Insurance as a special agent to focus on insurance fraud. Madison has volunteered for many events through McDowell FFA, Magical Moments and Western NC 2021 Fire College.


Raleigh, NC – Morgan Tatem


Morgan plans to attend the University of North Carolina at Greensboro to major in nursing and minor in sign language. To give back to her community, she helped a family friend during final days as she battled cancer, was the Team Leader for Top Teens of America, and Interned at the Joint Chiropractic. She aspires to be a nurse practitioner.


River City, FL – Carson Murray


Carson plans to attend Ave Maria University with a major in business. One day he plans to have his own construction company. He volunteers for Dinsmore Baptist cleaning up the church, working car shows, Callahan Little League and helping with anything needed on the football field.


Rocky Mount, NC – Myracle Gonzalez


Myracle plans to attend North Carolina Central University to study criminal justice. To give back to the community she has volunteered through her high school to donate turkeys and canned goods to families in need. Once she graduates, she plans to become a forensic psychologist.


Rosman, NC – Gabrielle Hightower


Gabrielle plans to attend Blue Ridge Community College for animal medicine. Her long-term career goal is to have her own veterinarian office. To give back to the community she volunteered for the FFA, the Hinton Retreat Center and was the greenhouse manager for her high school.


Wilmington, NC – Makoa Surigao


Makoa plans to attend Mary Baldwin University, Milligan University or the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. He has traveled to Puebla, Mexico for an international service trip, volunteered at Brunswick Family Assistance Emergency Temporary Distribution Center, and helped monthly with his youth group at a local food pantry. One day he wants to start a nonprofit charitable foundation as well as provide medical help to developing countries.


Wilson, NC – Princess Alston


Princess plans to attend North Carolina Central University. She volunteers with the Opportunities Industrialization Center of Wilson and Rocky Mount. Her long-term goal is to become a family nurse practitioner with a focus on pediatrics.


Windsor, NC – Tirah Spivey


Tirah plans to attend the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her long-term goal is to be a strategic business analyst and travel to companies finding ways to improve them and make them successful. She has volunteered for the National Beta holiday food drive, Relay for Life, swim camp, the 4-H Teen Retreat Community Service Day and 2020 Emergency Tornado Relief.

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Congratulations to each winner, and we send warm wishes as you pursue your education and future goals!

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