A Wyandanch teenager is among 106 students named national scholars and recipients of a $25,000 scholarship through the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans.
Abigail Cumberbatch, a senior at Queens Gateway to Health Sciences Secondary School in the borough’s Hillcrest neighborhood, is a winner of the annual scholarship for achieving educational success despite facing “great personal adversity,” the association said.
Cumberbatch’s challenges include losing her mother to complications from sickle cell anemia and her father a few years later when she was 16. After her father died, she moved in with an aunt. To be considered for the award, she provided her academic achievements and 250-word answers to questions about her adversities and inspirations.
“I was really shocked and excited,” Cumberbatch, 17, said of winning. “You never actually think you’re going to win something of this prestige.”
In addition to the scholarship, winners have access to various association-provided resources, including counseling and referral services, internship opportunities and alumni connections. They also attend the Horatio Alger National Scholars Conference and participate in college preparedness and other educational sessions to be held in Washington, D.C., on April 4 to 6.
This year’s scholars come from households with an average annual income of $14,692, and they maintained an average grade-point average of 3.75 out of 4, the association said.
“This group of students have demonstrated positive thinking, unwavering determination, and the discipline to prevail in the face of adversity,” said association president Matthew Rose.