LYNN — Four students from KIPP Academy in Lynn have received scholarships from the Sheryl Sandberg and David Goldberg and Family Foundation.
The four — Adedunmola Adewale, Elizabeth Agbedun, Jessica De Los Santos, and Jonathan Mejia — won the 2018 Dave Goldberg Scholarship. They are among 30 students who were selected from nearly 350 applicants nationwide to be part of this inaugural group of Goldberg Scholars.
“Our family is delighted to partner with KIPP to support a new generation of students who demonstrate so many of Dave’s qualities — especially his kindness, unflagging drive, independent thinking, and entrepreneurial spirit,” said Sandberg, Facebook COO and founder of LeanIn.Org and OptionB.Org. “Dave believed every child deserved a quality education. He would be so proud and hopeful to see the first class of Goldberg Scholars heading to college this fall.”
Goldberg, a Silicon Valley veteran, CEO of SurveyMonkey, and Sandberg’s husband, died in 2015 from accidental blunt force trauma while exercising, while vacationing with his family in Mexico. He was 47.
The program was established by the foundation last October to support KIPP graduating seniors across the country who have demonstrated remarkable leadership and achievement. The scholarship honors Goldberg’s legacy by supporting young people who embody his qualities of leadership, resilience, achievement, generosity, kindness, independent thinking and entrepreneurial spirit.
Adewale, Agbedun, De Los Santos, and Mejia will receive a combination of financial support and mentoring during their four-year college experience. Highlights include:
a mentor to provide ongoing support throughout college; financial support totaling approximately $15,000 a year to cover a range of non-tuition needs not traditionally covered by college-based financial aid; support from Goldberg Connectors to help secure summer internships and job opportunities; and participation in an annual Goldberg Scholars Summer Leadership Day, where scholars will meet leaders in their chosen fields
Recipients of the scholarship attend KIPP schools in 14 communities. They are all students of color, and many will be the first in their families to attend college. Any student who attended a KIPP school for either middle or high school and had above a 3.0 GPA was eligible to apply for the Goldberg Scholarship.
“Dave was passionate about the power of ideas and connecting people to make the world better,” said Rob Goldberg, Dave’s brother and founder and CEO of Fresno. “This scholarship brings those concepts to life in a way that would delight him, especially the focus on mentorship and building a community to support the students from the start of college through their first job.”
Adewale was born in Nigeria and came to the U.S. as a high school freshman. At KIPP, she led policy changes in her school, mentored youth in her community, and provided academic support to her peers. She will attend Bowdoin College.
Agbedun organized a movement to change school policy around allowing women to wear headwraps. She is attending Mount Holyoke College next year and plans to major in biomedical engineering in college.
De Los Santos is passionate about science and inquiry, she has pursued learning opportunities at the MEDscience Simulation Lab at Harvard Medical School and through the high school health careers program at UMass Medical School. She will attend Williams College where she plans to study biochemistry.
Mejia has been student body president and advocated for greater awareness and protection of KIPP’s LGBT community and is eager to pursue a career as a civil rights lawyer. He has been accepted to Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and plans to major in sociology.
“Adedunmola, Elizabeth, Jessica and Jonathan have worked incredibly hard to earn this prestigious honor,” said KIPP Massachusetts executive director Caleb Dolan. “With the Goldberg Scholarship, they will be connected to internship opportunities, professional development, and mentorship that will help them realize their career aspirations.”