North High School senior to receive $40,000 Amazon Future Engineer Scholarship
Making college plans, Tinh Tran applied for as many scholarships as he could. But the North High School 12th grader admitted that there was one specific scholarship he really wanted.
In April, Tran learned he was one of 100 students from across the United States to receive the Amazon Future Engineer scholarship.
Tran will now have a scholarship of $40,000 over the next four years to continue studying computer science at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. In addition, he is guaranteed a paid internship offer at Amazon following his freshman year.
“I hadn’t heard anything from Amazon for a long time and figured I didn’t get it,” he said. “When I finally heard back I was receiving the scholarship, it was like whoa!”
Recipients were chosen based on academic achievement, leadership abilities, participation in school and community activities, and financial need.
Tran had been active in robotics and the National Honor Society at North and enrolled in the Information Technology and Network Systems pathway at the Sioux City Career Academy.
“Tinh is a hardworking natural-born leader in the classroom,” Career Academy teacher Mary Hunt said. “He is a problem solver who perseveres until the task is completed.”
Indeed, Tran credited Hunt as well as other Career Academy teachers for his scholastic success.
“Career Academy pathways give students an opportunity to explore things that interest them,” he said. “Sometimes, the students discover the subject doesn’t really suit them. In my case, I found out I really liked computer science.”
Such classes gave Tran the confidence needed to participate in a space settlement design competition held at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, in Houston, when he was a 10th grader.
It also helped him, along with classmates Catrina Tounjian and Areeha Ilyas, to pick up a first-place finish for creating a mental health computer app during a Hackathon, sponsored by Creighton University Health Sciences and Multicultural Affairs, last November.
“My advice for students is to never stop trying and never stop learning,” Tran said. “Never let any opportunity to waste.”
That is why he may fit in a math camp or some other educational opportunity before going off to college in the fall.
“It is finally dawning on me that the scholarship is mine,” Tran said. “I want to make sure I’m really ready for it.”