It was the fifth win for a CCP student in the last 9 years, and a testament to the success of the Liberal Arts Honors Option Program
Philadelphia, PA (April 30, 2019) –Anyssa Q. El Manfaa, a Philadelphian with an interest in international studies and a student in Community College of Philadelphia (CCP)’s highly successful Liberal Arts Honors program, is among the 61 high-achieving students to win the elite Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s prestigious Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship in 2019. The highly competitive national scholarship will provide recipients with up to $40,000 annually for a maximum of three years to complete their bachelor’s degree.
Nearly 1,500 community college students across the country applied for the 2019 Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship. The Foundation evaluated each submission based on academic ability, persistence, leadership, and service to others. The recipients selected represent 18 different states have a median household adjusted gross income of $28,000 and an average GPA of 3.93.
“This is the best day of my life,” El Manfaa told CCP President Donald Guy Generals, who surprised her recently with news of the scholarship. “We all did it,” she told the throng of faculty and students surrounding her, thanking them for their support. “I couldn’t have done it by myself.”
El Manfaa said she enrolled in CCP to try to rewrite a narrative about herself; one that said she was not a scholar, and not destined for College. She saw herself going directly from high school to a job. Her time in CCP's Honors program, which is designed to strengthen academic abilities and prepare students to earn a bachelor’s degree and beyond, changed her thinking. “I am supposed to be here (in College),” she said with a grin “ I belong here."
El Manfaa is the third female from CCP to win the prestigious scholarship and the fifth Jack Kent Cooke transfer scholarship recipient in the past nine years. Larry Liu, the 2012 recipient, graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2015, and continued his remarkable journey at Oxford University, where he earned his master’s degree. Liu, also a graduate of the Liberal Arts Honors program, is now working on his PhD at Princeton University. Jennifer Myers, CCP's 2017 Jack Kent Cooke winner, will receive her bachelor's degree from Thomas Jefferson University in the coming weeks and begin work on her masters this fall at the University of Pennsylvania.
"Anyssa emerged as an academic leader in her final semester in the Honors program," said Dr. Brian D. Seymour, coordinator of the Honors program. "Her intellectual curiosity and drive to succeed made everyone around her better. There is no doubt she will excel at the next level."
With a 4.00 GPA, El Manfaa will graduate on May 4, 2019 at the College's 53rd commencement exercises at The Liacouras Center, at 1776 N. Broad Street. The ceremony starts at 10 a.m.
She has not yet selected a transfer institution but will continue her studies in international studies this fall. She plans to pursue international relations in hopes of using her skills to build bridges between cultures and end global conflicts.
El Manfaa also participated in CCP's Study Aboard program, visiting Japan on extended stay with fellow students and faculty, and Hiroshima, as it marked the 73rd anniversary of the Atomic bombing.
In addition to the monetary award, the new Cooke Transfer Scholars will receive comprehensive educational advising from Foundation staff to guide them through the process of transitioning to a four-year school and preparing for their careers. The Foundation will additionally provide opportunities for internships, study abroad, and graduate school funding, as well as connection to a thriving network of nearly 2,500 fellow Cooke Scholars and alumni.
"Our recent 'Persistence' report highlights the vast potential and achievements of community college transfer students — who go on to outperform their non-transfer peers at selective four-year institutions," said Seppy Basili, executive director of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation. "In an era where many high-achieving students often begin their higher education journey in community college, the Foundation is committed to enabling these transfer students to pursue their academic dreams at the nation's top colleges and universities."
About Community College of Philadelphia
Community College of Philadelphia is the largest public institution of higher education in Philadelphia and the sixth largest in Pennsylvania. The College enrolls approximately 28,000 students annually and offers day, evening, and weekend classes, as well as classes online. Visit the College at www.ccp.edu. Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook.
215-751-8082 (o), 713-302-9967 (c)