To the Frank B. and Salome E. Scholarship Board,

I would like to thank you, again, for helping me achieve my dreams with your generous scholarship contributing to my education. I absolutely could not be doing what I am doing without you! I hope all is well with you, as I am doing very well at the University of Colorado Boulder.

I am currently a sophomore, soon to be taking my finals and moving onto my junior year. My classes are very difficult, but I am enjoying the challenges presented by each of them. The most notable, Organic Chemistry, is definitely all it is cracked up to be. It is combining the intensity of a regular chemistry class with the thought-provoking nature of a philosophy class. In previous chemistry classes, I was able to hide behind the mathematical nature of calculating reactions, as number-crunching comes relatively easy to me; however, chemistry is testing my ability to visualize the mechanism by which reactions happen, and apply this knowledge to solve problems. I have never thought this way before, but I feel like I am getting the hang of it. It is time consuming, but worth it, for sure! My other major class is my Molecular/Cellular Biology class. This class, like chemistry, is challenging me in a way that I’ve never been challenged before — this time because I’m finding that I’m having to teach myself the course material on top of the professor’s lectures. The professor is not always the best at explaining concepts, so I’m having to put the extra effort in for this class as well. Despite the difficulties this semester has presented, I feel that I have grown as a student and learned a lot about myself, especially the way I think.

My extracurricular activities remain unchanged for the most part. I’ve taken over as business manager for my a cappella group, In the Buff, and we have become much more active as a group. We perform three times as much as we did last year, and have even taken trips together to Breckenridge and Provo, Utah. We competed in the ICCAs, an international competition, and placed third in the quarterfinals. This was a big stepping-stone year for our group and digging us out of the hole we were in before. Besides singing, I’ve still been skiing and rock climbing as often as I can.

This semester has really helped me grow, and I could not have done it without the generous scholarship from the church. I am starting to become much more serious about medical school, and I’ll be seeking volunteer positions around Boulder to get more acquainted with the field and interact with patients. I’ll be looking at research labs, nursing homes, child-interactions, and physician shadowing. My next year in school will be a crucial one, as I take on some of my most difficult semesters yet. Last year, I felt slightly hopeless that I would not be up to the challenge, but I believe this semester has prepared me for everything I have to take on to accomplish my goals.

Thank you again, for the experiences you have allowed me to have. I am forever grateful for the opportunities you have given me!

Sincerely,

Nick Brennan