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Jessee Steele, a member of the Nasher Teen Council, has earned a full scholarship to Duke University next year with a grant from QuestBridge.

QuestBridge is a non-profit based in California that promises four-year scholarships to students who are discouraged from applying to college due to high tuition costs. The application process for QuestBridge is long, and the deadline is early each fall, but the message is simple: If you get in, you can go.

Jessee, a senior at the North Carolina School of Science and Math in Durham, plans to major in cultural anthropology and environmental science, with a possible minor in statistics at Duke.

“After years and years of making my own opportunities in a small Appalachian town, being named a QuestBridge finalist felt like all of my hard work was recognized,” Jessee said. “I am so thankful for the platform that the Nasher Teen Council has provided me in pushing my interests in outreach and the arts as an important part of education. With both of these experiences, I feel confident moving forward in life that I can affect change on a real level in my communities.”

Another Nasher Teen Council member, Jessica Thompson, was a finalist with QuestBridge this year. Jessica is in the midst of the early application process at Columbia University.

“For me being a QuestBridge Finalist means giving my parents one less thing to worry about,” Thompson said. “My parents aren’t economically able to afford putting me through college and I don’t want to spend the rest of my life paying off student loans. QuestBridge will give me a fighting chance. Being a part of the Nasher Teen Council has provided me with a lot of new opportunities. I met my bandmate, got to work on different pieces of art, and collaborate with other people. The Nasher Teen Council has been a helpful outlet for me.”

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