Inside Rensselaer
New Scholarship Opportunities Recognize Academic Excellence and Leadership

New Scholarship Opportunities Recognize Academic Excellence and Leadership
Rensselaer’s Office of Enrollment Management recently announced two new annual scholarships for prospective students in recognition of their academic excellence in mathematics and science, and leadership, service, and devotion to their peers, schools, and communities.

The Hugh O’Brian Youth (HOBY) Leadership Scholarship and the Girl Scout Gold Award Scholarship will award students with a $5,000 per year merit scholarship that is guaranteed for four years (five years for the School of Architecture program) for each student who is accepted and chooses to enroll at Rensselaer.

“Approximately 88 percent of Rensselaer’s undergraduates receive some form of financial aid,” said James Nondorf, vice president for enrollment and dean of undergraduate and graduate admissions and financial aid. “That figure far exceeds those found at most of our peer institutions, and it underscores our commitment to making Rensselaer accessible to a wide range of academically outstanding students.”

The Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership program was founded in 1958 by renowned actor, humanitarian, and youth advocate Hugh O’Brian, best recognized for portraying “Wyatt Earp” on the hit television show in the 1950s and ’60s.

From May 30 to June 1, more than 190 students participated in a HOBY Leadership Seminar held on the Rensselaer campus. The students represented the organization’s New York East region comprised of 22 counties. HOBY’s multi-day leadership seminars, held in every state each spring, gather 10th graders to learn about leadership, improving critical thinking skills, goal-setting, and achieving their dreams. Planned and conducted entirely by volunteers and local experts in their fields, HOBY’s 70 United States leadership seminars are highly regarded by educators, and thousands of high schools annually participate by sending students to HOBY.

“This award provides an ideal way to reach out and celebrate these young men and women who exemplify leadership and teamwork,” Nondorf said. “Their reputations as problem solvers and doers, along with their academic talents, will help them to learn and to grow into world leaders in their chosen fields. Rensselaer’s dedication to prepare the leaders of tomorrow provides them with an ideal place to realize their potential.”

The Girl Scout Gold Award is the highest honor in Girl Scouting. Locally, more than 50 members affiliated with the Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York (GSNENY) were recognized for their accomplishments during a ceremony held June 22 at the Saratoga Maple Avenue Middle School.

The award serves as a culmination of the work that a member puts into “going for the Gold” through developing a project that encompasses organizational, leadership, career planning, personal development, networking skills, and community service.

Sample projects include: the Women in Science (WISE) program to encourage women to pursue careers in science, an after-school American Sign Language class, a leukemia awareness carnival, a free community concert and food pantry, the Eat Local Challenge to support local and organic farmers, the Unity House makeover, a pet adoption day, and the Gilda’s Club Youth Awareness Campaign, among others.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to recognize the achievements of young women who have gone to great lengths to contribute positively to the growth of their communities and peers, sacrificing countless hours to see their projects through. The Gold Award is the culmination of years of dedication and commitment,” Nondorf said. “This scholarship provides an ideal way to encourage these dedicated young women to continue their efforts to learn, grow, and to help others.”

For more information on HOBY, go to:
For more information on the Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York (GSNENY), go to:

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Inside Rensselaer, Strategic Communications and External Relations
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Inside Rensselaer
Volume 2, Number 11, July 7, 2008
©2008 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
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