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Senior Earns QuestBridge Scholarship

Loyola Academy senior Kiet C. “Ken” Lam has been awarded admission to college through QuestBridge, a national nonprofit based in Palo Alto, California, that connects the nation’s most exceptional, low-income youth with full four-year scholarships to top colleges. Ken will attend Hamilton College in New York where he will study neuroscience.
By working with these students—beginning in high school through college and to their first job—QuestBridge aims to increase the percentage of talented low-income students attending the nation’s best colleges. Partner schools include top liberal arts colleges such as Amherst, Pomona and Williams and exceptional research universities such as Duke, Princeton, Stanford, UChicago and Yale. In nearly thirty years, QuestBridge has helped thousands of students gain admission with full scholarships (or general financial aid) to QuestBridge college partners.

Loyola Academy College Counselor Ms. Lizabeth Riggs worked closely with Ken throughout the lengthy application process, which includes interviews, webinar sessions and a separate, unique application for QuestBridge. “Ken is one of the most motivated, coachable and compassionate students I have ever had the pleasure to work with,” says Riggs. “He took the lead early on in the process and showed up to every meeting with great questions as well as findings from his own research. As immigrants from Vietnam, Ken and his parents have witnessed firsthand how a solid educational foundation can literally change the course of one's life.” Riggs adds that while Ken is laser-focused on advancing his educational pursuits, he’s also open-minded and willing to learn about new opportunities. “Ken's enthusiasm for academics, especially in the sciences, is unparalleled. The college counseling team here at LA has learned so much from him about the reverse-aging process, telomeres and neuroscience. We cannot wait to see what Ken accomplishes at Hamilton College and beyond!”

QuestBridge announced that this year’s competitive applicant pool exceeded 16,500. Of these applications, 6,312 finalists were selected for consideration for a coveted QuestBridge National College Match Scholarship. Ultimately, QuestBridge’s 45 college partners matched with just 1,674 scholarship recipients. 
These outstanding high school seniors have an average unweighted GPA of 3.93. 92% are in the top 10% of their graduating class. Financially, 95% come from a household with an annual income under $65,000. The majority of these new QuestBridge Scholars are among the first generation in their families to attend a four-year college in the United States.
Match Scholarship Recipients are admitted early to QuestBridge college partners with full four-year scholarships that are provided by the colleges and universities, ensuring for these students and their families that an education at a top college can be affordable. The Match Scholarship is offered as part of a generous financial aid package provided by the college that covers the full cost of attendance, including tuition, room and board, books and supplies, and travel expenses.
Outside the classroom, Ken has tutored math and other academic subjects at Asian Human Services, Chicago Chinese North Shore Center, St. Matthias and Mathnasium, where he currently works. He was also selected to participate in UChicago’s Quantum Quickstart summer program, where he listened to lectures from pioneers in the molecular engineering area of quantum science. In addition, Ken is a member of Loyola’s Math Team and plays the flute in Loyola’s Band. He also enjoys playing the piano during his free time. 
“One of my favorite classes at Loyola Academy has to be AP Biology,” reflects Ken, who says that the class challenges him to learn in new ways, improve his time management and study content more in-depth. “Thanks to this class, understanding novel biological discoveries, such as the innovation of reverse aging, became a more intriguing and exciting experience. I can directly apply my introductory knowledge of biology to real-world scientific concepts and grow from there as a person who has a strong interest in the STEM field.” Ken is grateful to AP Biology Teacher Mr. Bradley Diaz for his flexibility in meeting after school, which he credits as a contributing factor in his success in the class.  
More about the QuestBridge scholarship program can be found at

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