When Harvey Kaylie ’60 EE, founder and president of Mini-Circuits, established five $30,000 scholarships for incoming students at the Grove School, he wanted to encourage young people, who like himself, had the qualifications and the drive for an engineering education but lacked the means. And the bar for these students was set very high. The requirements were a minimum high school average of 90 and minimum SAT score of 1250; with demonstrated financial need, a positive work ethic shown through work experience, community service, research beyond the regular class room hours, or other exceptional activities.
The students profiled below are the first recipients of the scholarships, which provide $6,000 a year for five years. They will enter the Grove School in the fall of 2007. Their average SAT score is 1265and grade point average is 93. They come from a rich diversity of backgrounds and are all US citizens or permanent residents.
Candy Barbaran, Electrical Engineering
Martin Van Buren High School, Queens
Candy’s parents emigrated from Mexico and Peru, and she is fluent in Spanish. In addition to her Honors English and Government classes, she was chosen to present her science research at CCNY’s NYCRI Research Summit, and is currently active in the NASA-COSI/Pilot Program. As a member of ARISTA, she served as a peer tutor in high school, and wrote for Currents magazine. Candy says, “I am resolute in every sense of the word. The most meaningful example of this was during my participation in the NASA-NYC Research Initiative program where I had to overcome my greatest fear – to be deemed inadequate. My struggles and those of my family have shown me that I possess no limitations except those I impose on myself.”
Stanley George, Chemical Engineering
Elmont Memorial High School, Elmont
Stanley and his family, which, he says, is “full of many engineers” emigrated from India. He placed at the top of his AP Chemistry class, and also took AP Physics. Stanley participated in the National Honors Music program. He was both an acclaimed member of Elmont’s marching band and a member of its varsity volleyball team, which he coached in the 8th grade.
Wahid Hussaini, Mechanical Engineering
Bayside High School, Bayside
Wahid, whose family emigrated from Afghanistan, speaks Farsi. The top student in AP Calculus, he took Physics and Honors Government, and earned exemplary Regents Math, Chemistry and Physics scores. For years he has worked in a restaurant, where his father is chef, and says, “Watching him, I learned how hard one would have to work to make just a few dollars, and slowly I understood how hard my father had to work to support the whole family.”
Hui (Lilian) Lam, Chemical Engineering
Lilian emigrated from Hong Kong with her parents and speaks Mandarin and Cantonese. In high school she was in the Science Honors program and took AP Calculus and English and College Organic Chemistry. She graduated with top awards in chemistry and poetry and was also lead soprano in the school’s nationally known Chamber Chorus. About her future, Lilian says, “I think I might be interested in helping to change the components of plastic bags to something organic so they will readily decompose. When asked to describe myself in an interview for a summer science internship, I confidently said, ‘I am a chemistry student with a concentration in chorus,’ which may be the answer that got me the position.”
Diniece Peters, Civil Engineering
Science Skills Center High School, Brooklyn
Valedictorian of her class, and inducted into Phi Beta Skills Honor Society, Diniece earned an Advanced Regents Diploma and had the highest average of the 50 students in the A.P. program. Diniece, who emigrated from Trinidad and Tobago when she was 12, is considering a teaching career. Her high school courses included A.P. English/ Composition, Physics and Government. She participated in College Now and the ACE Mentor Program which exposes high school students to careers in architecture, construction and engineering, and she spent a semester helping fellow students learn to operate Autodesk Inventor and Sketch Up. Her other activities included Mock Trial, Junior Achievement and interning with the School Construction Authority. Diniece also paints and draws. She says of herself, “I have hopes of fulfilling the American Dream. I want to contribute to this diverse American culture, and to bring to America what I learned, together with the strengths and aspirations that I possess.”
Kostas Sanidas, Chemical Engineering
Townsend Harris High School, Queens
Kostas’s parents emigrated from Greece, and he is fluent in Greek. He was class valedictorian, and his high school courses included A.P. Statistics and Government; Honors Robotics; and four Queens College courses: humanities, forensic science, anthropology and modern Greek translations. Named magna and summa cum laude for national Latin examinations I and II, respectively, he was a juror in CUNY Law School Mock Trial; and a member of ARISTA. An accomplished scholar-athlete, Kostas was captain of the basketball team, a member of the track and field program, plays baseball and enjoys the tenor saxophone. He volunteered as a kindergarten teacher’s assistant every Saturday and also worked for a New York State senator. Kostas says, “Although not an immigrant myself, I have been instilled with the immigrant’s values of hard work, education, and sheer will for success, and like my parents, will succeed after starting with meager means.”