Here at the City College Fund, we love welcoming people, especially familiar faces, and building relationships. Faces from last year’s Bronx Science/CCNY Scholarship Project Luncheon, and beyond, returned this week to meet the new generation of grateful and deserving scholarship recipients. An easy camaraderie filled the College’s Amsterdam Room as different generations of graduates of both Bronx Science High School and CCNY shared favorite memories, favorite subjects, and anecdotes from both institutions. One theme became clear: the standards were high and the curricula rigorous for both schools; our guests not only survived, they rose to the occasion, and they are better for it.
This was crystallized in the speeches of Ahbhishek Samdaria, and Shanjidah Ambia. Very early in his life, Ahbhishek and his family were uprooted several times for his father’s job—India to Hong Kong, then Minnesota, then India, and now, New York—resulting in tremendous culture shock and inconsistent learning environments. He overcame that to become a star player of athletics teams at Bronx Science, and at City, an entrepreneur with his own start-up, fostered at the Zahn Innovation Center. (The City College Fund is the parent company of the Zahn Innovation Center.) He also interned at NASA this past summer.
Shanjidah, of Bengali descent, is a freshman with her eye on becoming a doctor. Because of the scholarship, she can direct all of her time on her studies, and medical internships, such as the one she held last summer at a hospital. She doesn’t need to burden her family—which includes two younger college-bound siblings—with bills for her education.
Where else but CCNY can you hear such inspiring success stories? And the truth is that, although these specific students held our guests riveted by their stories, we meet students of their caliber each day at the City College Fund.
This is the time of year when charitable giving is a higher priority for many. When you are ready to make your year-end donations, please remember the Bronx Science/CCNY Scholarship Project. It is our pleasure to help make the lives of our worthy scholars easier. However, it can’t be done without your help. With that in mind, we hope that your face becomes familiar to us at the next Bronx Science/CCNY Scholarship Project Luncheon, and future luncheons as well.