Brianna Vassar's Scholarship Winning Essay

The complete, unedited version of the essay that won Fowler High School senior, Brianna Vassar, a $500 Charles Dozier III Memorial Scholarship:

My name is Brianna K. Vassar, I am seventeen years old and I am a senior at Fowler High School. I’ve obtained an 83 grade point average throughout my high school career. I am determined, outgoing, dedicated, respectful and hardworking. I am employed at Price Chopper on Erie Blvd and have been since June of 2010. I am engaged in volleyball, basketball and softball, all three sports I have been playing for six years. I am an outstanding player in softball as colleges plan to watch me play in the spring of 2012. I am considered an advanced student so while other seniors sit in required classes they need to graduate, I am taking two college classes and getting a feel for what college will be like next year.

I am engaged in Community Wide Dialogue where students from Fowler High School and Skaneateles High School join and discuss how to end stereotypes and the importance of how much stereotyping has the effect on a persons life and social activities. I have done twenty hours of community service for the American Red Cross Blood Drive as I sat through lunches and recruited people to donate, help organize and set up the Blood Drive and sign each person in, as well as donate my own blood in early 2011.

With my father going to prison for twenty-eight years my mother was then introduced to the single parent life that would exist throughout my life. At one point in my life I wanted to give up because everything for me seemed so hard and I was never home because of how tight my schedule was with school, sports and work. From the struggles that existed in my life, I overcame all the obstacles in my way of living a successful life. I had a hard time understanding that furthering my education is not just a necessity it is an opportunity to learn and explore the world that I live in. Education is so important as many people take it for granted. I do not plan to work at a grocery store for the rest of my life because I am too smart to not further my education. My education is one of the most
important things to me because it will tell where I am in twenty years. I am no A student but I am a hardworking student who understand the importance of getting my high school diploma and going on to college.

I have a significantly larger chance of getting into the law enforcement if I further my education as competition gets harder and harder on a daily basis. With Olivia Benson from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit being my role model I decided I wanted to do something I was interested in and that will benefit the community. I plan to major in criminal justice or forensics as I want to become a homicide detective. I first have to become a police officer and move up. My forte is forensics. I will use my education to enhance my community in many ways. There are so many homicides, rapes, robberies and more, that happen on a daily basis and people need justice and need to be able to feel safe in and around the place they call home.

Being a police officer is an important job and many people look up to police officers. Children, especially are taught that if you break a law then that is when there are consequences. I am a good role model as I also participated in the Jenna Foundation Mentoring Program. Jenna was a twenty two year old woman who was murdered in Camillus in 1997. Jenna’s parents created a foundation for mentors to go to elementary schools and discuss the importance of non-violence. When I went to Blodgett and worked with fifth graders,I saw myself as a leader and a role model.

I think I would have an big impact on the police force being a female multi-racial police officer. Police officers are stereotyped as white men. Having more diverse women on the force can help end the stereotypes and make more people feel comfortable as the police force looks like they people they serve. I want to make a difference because I like helping people. If people didn’t help people then the world would be a complete puzzle that no one could solve alone. I have grown up in Central New York so I would already be familiar with my surroundings and what happens in my neighborhood. I know I can have a major impact on my community and other communities. I plan to have a wonderful future as I help get criminals off the streets. I have grown to learn that education is one of the most important things in my life. Without education, I wouldn’t be where I am today and I wont be who I will be in my future. I am proud to say I will be a somebody and not just a statistic.

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