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Scholarships

Outpouring of support opens the door to first generation student

By: Sarah Satterwhite

As Cameron Simmons dedicates himself to his studies, his community, and his future, scholarships are paving the way.

He worked tirelessly to prepare himself in the years prior to attending the University of Denver, learning about both the opportunities and the challenges of the college experience. Chief among those challenges was the cost. He knew that his educational future depended on scholarships.

Among the schools to which Cameron applied, DU was the only one that reached out to demonstrate sincere interest in him. Current DU parents called his parents, and students reached out to him. They walked his family through the financial aid process and answered questions about all aspects of the University.

Cameron received the Daniels Fund Scholarship, and he was also named Colorado State Youth of the Year by the Boys and Girls Club, which provided him additional scholarship funds. As the first in his family to go to college, these scholarships helped him realize his boyhood dream.

“Without scholarships, I wouldn’t have been able to come to DU at all,” says Cameron. “They allow me to contribute to the campus experience rather than working 60 hours a week to pay a bill.”

As president of the Black Student Alliance and an active member of the Pioneer Leadership Program, through which he mentors high school students, Cameron invests his time in the community around him. He has his sights set on an MBA at DU, working for the Boys and Girls Club, and eventually returning to Denver for a law degree and a political career. He wants to make a larger impact on society, perhaps even one day becoming the chancellor of his alma mater.

“I would be able to relate to the students,” he says. “I can tell them that I came here and got my degree; let me show you the way.”

Through ASCEND Impact Stories, we examine the impact that philanthropy has made on the lives of our students, faculty, alumni, and donors during ASCEND: The Campaign for the University of Denver.

If you want to learn more, please contact the office of
Donor Relations & Stewardship at 303.871.2699.

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