College Access Foundation of California is advancing opportunity for Amy Zhong ’14.
Making the transition into college can be difficult for many freshmen students, but it can be especially difficult for first-generation college students, like Redding, Calif., native Amy Zhong, who can’t look to their parents’ experiences during this next phase of their lives.
Fortunately, Zhong had the help of College Access Foundation of California — a nonprofit organization that awards grants to community organizations who help low-income and first-generation students attend college and successfully graduate.
College OPTIONS, a part of UC Davis’ Student Affair’s Academic Preparation Programs that is located in Redding, received support from College Access Foundations of California and, in turn, awarded Zhong a scholarship. College OPTIONS also helped Zhong fill out college applications and apply for other scholarships. She is attending UC Davis on a full scholarship.
“The scholarships meant that I could actually go to college. My parents work really hard, but they wouldn’t be able to support four years of college,” said Zhong who was accepted to UC Davis because of her 4.16 high school GPA and her long, dedicated track record as a volunteer. “It’s really nice that I have the help and I don’t have to leave college with loans. It’s such a motivation for me to do well in school.”
College OPTIONS has continued to help Zhong during her time at UC Davis, making sure her course schedule is in line with her career ambitions to be a doctor.
“It was really nice to have that help as I made that transition into college. I didn’t know what to expect when I came here,” said the neurobiology, physiology and behavior major who is interested in a career in medicine. “Having that help is allowing me to pursue my goals; I’m really grateful. College OPTIONS helped me achieve what I have today.”