Students earn prestigious scholarship

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship unveiled its winners on April 14, and among the 75 selected victors of the scholarship are two City College students, Bryce Schierenbeck and Marikris Racho.

The prestigious scholarship was awarded to four students in the San Diego Community College District, Schierenbeck and Racho from City, as well as two students from Miramar College, Mehrdad Yazdanibiouki and Trin Hoang Viet Nguyen.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship offers a generous sum of tuition money for bright students with financial need. Both City College winners share a desire to help people in their own respective ways through law and medicine.

“I didn’t think I would ever have a chance at all on winning the scholarship,” said Schierenbeck, 34, business major. “Why not apply? Put yourself out there, see if it works,” he added.

Bryce Schierenbeck (scholarship winner)
Bryce Schierenbeck is one of two City College students who was awarded the JKCF Scholarship. (Courtesy photo)

The army veteran has been very active on campus as an influential force in the founding of the Veteran Support Center and Veterans for Peace. His interest in business was first sparked when he was a catering manager in Berkeley.

While his company was providing their services at the Haas School of Business, Schierenbeck was offered a glimpse of endless possibilities.

“I actually sat in on an award ceremony and heard what they had to say about business and how promising it was, how it can change the world,” said Schierenbeck.

“At that point, I decided I really wanted to go into business. It gives you so many avenues of approaching different problems in different ways,” he added.

Schierenbeck is waiting to hear back on his applications, but he says Berkeley would be his top choice.

He hopes to advance to law school to obtain his Master of Business Administration, and create more veteran service centers.

Racho, like Schierenbeck, has a desire to make a difference in the world, but through the medical field instead of law.

Her medical aspirations began at the tender age of 9, when she was still living in her native Philippines.

“My appendix burst and they couldn’t find the right hospital for me,” said the 21-year-old biology major as she recalled that significant and life-threatening day.

“I was inspired, I was very thankful. I don’t remember the name of the surgeon that saved me, I’m very thankful and it’s because of him that I’m here right now. Doing the things that I love,” said Racho.

Marikris Racho (scholarship winner)
Marikris Racho, JKCF Scholarship winner and City student, volunteering at Ruben Fleet Science Center through the Price Scholarship Program. (Courtesy photo)

Racho has kept busy on campus by serving as a peer educator at the Mental Health Services and completed an internship this past summer at the UCSD-Moores Cancer Center Summer Enrichment Program.

She plans to attend SDSU then hopes to get in the UCSF medical school program, where she would like to specialize in the gastrointestinal system.

Racho expressed her gratitude towards Price Scholarship director Maria Elena Delgado, Rafael Alvarez, director of the Math, Engineering, Science Achievement program, as well as her boyfriend, for helping her complete her scholarship requirements.

“There’s nothing to lose if you apply. When you apply at least there’s a hope that you will get something instead of not applying. If there’s an opportunity, go grab it,” said Racho.

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Students earn prestigious scholarship