Student Loan Hero Fall 2019 Scholarship Winners

 September 10, 2019
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Scholarship Winners

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Private Student Loan rates starting at 2.49% APR

2.49% to 13.85% 1

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2.55% to 11.44% 2

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3.25% to 13.59% 3

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  • Variable APR

As part of our ongoing efforts to fight the student debt crisis, Student Loan Hero is excited to announce the six winners of our fall 2019 scholarships. These deserving recipients overcame incredible challenges to get where they are today, and we’re thrilled to support them as they continue working hard to achieve their goals.

It’s our sincere hope that this scholarship will ease the financial burden as they work toward their degrees, and reduce the amount they need to borrow in student loans. Read on to meet the scholarship winners in this round of Student Loan Hero scholarships, and learn their inspiring stories.

Ann Potter, George Mason University

Image courtesy of Ann Potter

Grand prize: $5,000

As a political science major at George Mason University, Ann is committed to a future career in the political arena, working for the protection of health insurance rights. Her motivation comes from personal experience, having supported her sister through three battles with leukemia. Her family’s experience with cancer taught Ann to keep moving and never give up on her mission to provide continuous health care coverage for people in need.

Fabiola Tucux, University of Pennsylvania

Image courtesy of Fabiola Tucux

Grand prize: $5,000

As she pursues her master’s in education at the University of Pennsylvania, Fabiola is studying ways to achieve educational equity. The first in her family to go to a four-year university, Fabiola struggled with self-doubt and financial hardship.

But with the help of her community, she was able to reach her goals and immerse herself in education, policy, administration and youth empowerment. When she’s not learning about social justice and entrepreneurship, Fabiola enjoys writing, blogging, traveling, hiking and watching and playing basketball.

Jazmin Ochoa, Chamberlain University

Image courtesy of Jazmin Ochoa

Runner-up prize: $2,000

Jazmin is a first-generation student at Chamberlain University and is passionate about health care justice and equity. Along with her personal experiences with inequality in the health care system, she speaks of having met many patients through her work in a pharmacy who can’t afford the medication they need.

Jazmin determined to uplift marginalized groups by working as a nurse, and hopes to use her language skills — she is bilingual — to help bring health care to Spanish-speaking patients. Jazmin is focused on her long-term goal of providing and ensuring equitable health care services for all.

Kadijatou Diallo, Harvard University

Image courtesy of Kadijatou Diallo

Runner-up prize: $2,000

Kadijatou (who also goes by Kadija) is a master of public policy student at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. Born in Guinea, but raised in Senegal and New York City, she considers herself a citizen of the world, rather than of any one place. Kadija has worked with organizations to advocate for various issues, including the improvement of local judiciaries, gender equity and access to social services for underserved populations.

Kadija’s primary interests revolve around improving governance to serve the needs of immigrants, implementing sustainable practices for integration and widening access to services. When she’s not engaged in studying or her advocacy work, Kadija enjoys writing and trying new restaurants with friends and daydreams about trekking across the Mongolian landscape.

Perla Ramos, UC Irvine School of Law

Image courtesy of Perla Ramos

Runner-up prize: $2,000

Perla, a first-year student at UC Irvine School of Law, is committed to providing meaningful advocacy and legal representation for minority populations in Southern California. The youngest daughter of immigrant parents, Perla had limited resources when it came to navigating the higher education system. She witnessed firsthand the job insecurity and language and education barriers that held back her parents and other members of her community.

Perla has a passion for serving low-income, underrepresented clients, which she has pursued through legal internships and an academic focus in the social sciences. As a bilingual lawyer, Perla plans to work with underserved Spanish-speaking clients who have limited access to legal representation.

Shannon Zullo, University of Arizona College of Medicine

Image courtesy of Shannon Zullo

Runner-up prize: $2,000

Medical student Shannon Zullo is in her fourth year at the University of Arizona, where she’s pursuing her passion for medicine and hopes to work toward ending health care disparities. Having received her bachelor of science degree in psychology from Duke University and a master of science degree in cellular and molecular medicine from the University of Arizona, Shannon is continuing to work toward a career as a dermatologist-researcher.

A Native American student who grew up on the Navajo reservation, Shannon has focused her research on skin cancer and dermatologic disparities within Native American communities. In recognition of her academic and clinical achievement, Shannon was a recipient of several national awards and has held a number of leadership positions, including co-president of the Association of Native American Medical Students and head coordinator of Sun Smarts, a volunteer program helping children learn about skin cancer prevention.

Shannon plans to continue pursuing academic medicine while working to close dermatologic health care gaps for underserved communities.

You’re invited to apply for Student Loan Hero’s spring 2020 scholarship

Congratulations to the winners of the fall 2019 Student Loan Hero scholarship! We wish you all the best as you continue your education and continue to make the world a better place.

If you’re a current or upcoming student, we invite you to apply to our scholarship for the spring 2020 semester. As part of your application, we ask that you write a response to the following question:

What financial challenges have you overcome growing up? How have they shaped your goals and career aspirations?

The application opened Aug. 5, 2019, and will be available until October 6, 2019. We look forward to seeing your submissions and are thankful we can provide some assistance as you work toward your degree.

Need a student loan?

Check out our top picks below or learn more about other ways to pay for college.
Variable APRDegrees That QualifyMore Info
2.49% – 13.85%1 Undergraduate

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2.55% – 11.44%2 Undergraduate

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3.25% – 13.59%3 Undergraduate

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0.00% – 23.00%4 Undergraduate

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3.25% – 9.69%5 Undergraduate


N/A 6 Undergraduate

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