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2 Fatima students earn full tuition to Columbia College

2 Fatima students earn full tuition to Columbia College

February 19th, 2019 by Phillip Sitter in Local News

Fatima seniors Alyssa Struemph and Jacob Knaebel received Presidential Scholarships, presented to them Monday at Fatima High School. The $93,000 checks will cover tuition for four years at Columbia College.

Photo by Jenna Kieser /News Tribune.

Two Fatima High School students were surprised in class Monday with a presentation fitting of President's Day — being named as recipients of Presidential Scholarships from Columbia College, worth more than $90,000.

Fatima students Jacob Knaebel and Alyssa Struemph were in statistics class when a group, including their families and Columbia College admissions officers, came in to announce they were getting scholarships worth full tuition for four years — $93,992.

Columbia College Admissions Counselor Tera Palozola said the school gives out 10 of the scholarships each year.

Columbia College Director of Recruiting Bryan McCarthy said it's pretty rare for two students at the same school to be awarded the scholarship in the same year.

"We haven't had two (students) from the same school in a decade," McCarthy said.

To add to Fatima's achievements, two students also received the Presidential Scholarship last year. Those students were Macy Berhorst and Caleb Fischer, Columbia College Director of Social Media Mia Platz said.

Knaebel said he plans to major in communications studies and Struemph said she plans to study biology and pre-medicine.

The Presidential Scholarships are awarded to admitted, incoming freshmen students who will start in the fall at the school's main campus. To be eligible for a Presidential Scholarship, a student must have at least a 3.6 grade point average, have scored at least a 26 on the ACT, and have performed well on essays and interviews that were part of the Scholarship Day competition Jan. 26.

About 60 students competed at Scholarship Day, McCarthy said.