Five DPS seniors awarded Gates Millennium Scholarships

Top-performing students from Cass Tech, DIA and Renaissance receive full-ride scholarships covering their college expenses through graduate school

Five Detroit Public Schools seniors are recipients of the prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship award and will be attending top-ranked colleges and universities including Michigan State University, Harvard University and Spelman College.

The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program selects 1,000 talented students each year to receive a full-ride scholarship covering all college expenses including tuition, housing, books and supplies through graduate school to use at any college or university of their choice.

This year, 21 students were selected from the state of Michigan with five of those students attending Detroit Public Schools.

The 2014 DPS recipients include:
Cass Technical High School-Mario Martinez and Candice Wright
Detroit International Academy for Young Women-Breona Mueller
Renaissance High School-Syed Mahdi and Ariel Ragin

Breonna Mueller, a Detroit International Academy for Young Women senior, shared the following email message with Principal Beverly Hibbler after learning of the honor: “The night before I realized that I was a Gates Millennium recipient I was up crying, stressed out, and worried about how my family could pay for me to attend Spelman College,” Mueller said. “I knew I was worthy of a full ride, yet I had no idea from where it would come. I was relieved from the stress and worry of paying for my life-long education which includes my PhD. I am extremely grateful and humbled to receive this magnificent scholarship.”

According to the Gates Millennium Scholars Program website, this is the largest and most successful minority scholarship program in the country. Thousands of students annually submit their applications in hopes of full-ride scholarships to countless post-secondary institutions.

Candidates were required to complete the GMS official application, which consisted of three parts: a student application submitted by the student; a nominator form completed and submitted by an educator (principal, teacher, counselor); and a recommender form completed and submitted by any adult (work supervisor or a community leader) who is familiar with the student’s community service and leadership activities.

“This is such an honor for these well-deserving students,” said Sylvia Sanders, Cass Technical High School Counselor. “This opportunity is not only an honor to the recipients and the recipients’ schools, but the district as well. This is really showcasing the level of talent we truly have within our district.”

With more than $146 million in student grants and scholarships for 2013 graduates, DPS is committed to supporting all families and providing the highest quality public education available to its students.

The district recently launched its spring Open Enrollment period, extending now through May 20. For more details, visit or call 313-240-4DPS (4377).

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