(Orange, Texas)

March 1, 2013

Orangefield seniors named Mirabeau Scholars

Special to The Leader

ORANGEFIELD — Six Orangefield High School seniors have been awarded the prestigious Mirabeau Scholarship to Lamar University-Beaumont.

This year’s recipients are Devin Allen, Emily Blanke, Shane Granger, Christopher LaChance, Elizabeth Newell, and Kimanh Tsan. Mirabeau Scholars receive a full scholarship for four years covering tuition, fees, room and board, and books. Each scholarship is valued at more than $75,000 over eight semesters.

To be considered for the scholarship, high school seniors must have a minimum SAT score of 1250 (excluding the writing score) or a composite ACT score of at least 28 and have demonstrated excellence in prior academic work. In addition, students must show leadership, service, and creativity qualities.

In order to apply for the scholarship, applicants must first be accepted for admission to Lamar University. Then each student submits a letter of interest that presents a personal statement of his or her academic goals and intended major, along with a current resume and three letters of recommendation. Students also went through a formal interview where they met with university scholarship officials and spoke about their future plans.

To maintain the scholarship, scholars must maintain a cumulative annual GPA of at least 3.5, participate in the University Honors Program, and be involved in one or more of the following student activities: leadership, government, Lamar Ambassadors, Peer Advisors, or undergraduate research.

Devin Allen will study either civil or mechanical engineering. “To me, the Mirabeau Scholarship means much more than a free baccalaureate degree. This scholarship is a blessing that goes much deeper than that,” he said. “To be given this scholarship means to never pay a student loan, to not be forced to work two jobs during college, and to be able to give all that I have to my courses. I owe Lamar University great thanks and one day I will repay them.”

Emily Blanke is planning to study mathematics. She would like to be an event planner or a high school math teacher. She was very nervous going into the interview, but the interviewers made her feel relaxed. “Being awarded the Mirabeau Scholarship is one of the most amazing feelings I have ever had,” said Blanke. “I am honored by this award and I am very proud of my school.”

Shane Granger plans to major in computer science. His ideal job is to either work for Google or in criminal justice. During the interview he was slightly nervous, but afterward felt that the interview process went smoothly. “I am very excited to be chosen for this amazing scholarship,” said Granger.

Christopher LaChance plans to double major in electrical engineering and computer science. After graduating from Lamar University, he would like to get a PhD in Electrical Engineering at Washington State University. His ultimate goal in life is to develop new and resourceful technologies that will improve the world in more ways than one. When he found out that he had been awarded the Mirabeau Scholarship he felt as if time stood still. “It was almost as if I could see my future panning itself out in front of me, showing every possibility throughout every feasible timeline,” he said. “I could see every minute detail of my future, regardless of their independent probabilities of success. I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity.”

Elizabeth Newell is looking forward to pursuing a degree in the nursing field. “For the past four years, I have pushed myself to reach high goals and prepare for the future,” said Newell. “As a Mirabeau recipient, I plan to further my education and become a qualified nurse whose role is to serve others inside and outside of the medical realm.”

Kimanh Tsan is planning to major in either biology or accounting. At this time, she is leaning towards a career in the dentistry field, perhaps an orthodontist. We she found out that she was a scholarship recipient, she was in awe. She said, “It is very relieving to know that I won’t have to worry about paying for college. I can just focus on fulfilling the requirements of the scholarship.”