Hope Ascendant: VHS student receives $1.2M in scholarships; accepted at 50 universities, colleges
Mar. 18—VALDOSTA — Valdosta High School student Hope Emanuel is on the road to success as she has been accepted to more than 50 colleges and universities with $1 million in scholarships.
Emanuel has been given 22 full-ride or partial scholarship offers which equal to $1.2 million.
"I promised my parents that if they would support me by attending multiple college and academic programs, I would work and network so that they would not have to pay a dime for college," Emanuel said.
"I am very proud of myself. Without hard work, determination and most importantly God, I wouldn't be where I am."
Emanuel is the youngest daughter of Demetria and Victoria Emanuel and sister to Faith Emanuel and Katrice Barnes.
Since the age of 10, Emanuel has been a goal-driven and determined young lady. She began her jewelry business, Hope's Dazzling Accessories, and started a nonprofit organization Vision of Hope, a coin drive set up at her church to help raise funds to feed children after they leave school, Emanuel said.
Her parents said they are proud of her balance, dedication, humility and faith.
Demetria said, "I am excited and happy for Hope. We have watched her push herself and reach what she always wanted in life.
"As parents you should nurture the intelligence of your children and encourage them to accomplish greater things than yourself."
Victoria said, "It's amazing to know that she is soaring and doing awesome things. I'm humbled to know that God chose her."
Emanuel will be the second, following her older sister, to attend college, which is a huge accomplishment for her.
She said, "I wanted to be able to accomplish this to give my parents and family a sense of pride."
During the pandemic, Emanuel lost both of her grandparents due to illnesses, which she said empowered her to keep going and achieve her goals in their honor.
In 2022, Emanuel attended Emory University and Harvard University summer programs through her involvement with the AVID — Advancement Via Individual Determination, Educational Talent Search and 21st Century Leaders.
While at Emory with 21st Century Leaders, Emanuel had the role in introducing Dan Costa at the leadership dinner.
Emanuel said the experience at Emory was unparalleled, allowing her to further develop her leadership skills and network with diverse students from across Georgia. Also, the program offered her first on-campus college experience.
She said, "The experience truly allowed me to step out on faith, which made me resilient and I learned how to rise above all negativity and feelings of displacement."
Following that experience, Emanuel attended Harvard University as a Harvard Academy Scholar. She was nominated for the program by her AVID teacher at VHS.
Emanuel was the team leader for her group, which had to conduct a business pitch at the end of the program which she won second place overall.
Victoria said at this moment she and Demetria saw their daughter in a different light.
"The fact that she represented Valdosta so well and blew the crowd away, I was truly in awe of her," Victoria said. "It is important for our community to know it is not always about sports because her intellect is taking her to places we never thought (possible)."
Victoria and Demetria said the village of community truly pulled together to raise funds, buy necessary items and support Hope on her journey to Harvard, as well as, her stay at Emory.
"We are appreciative to the village and community for everything that they have done to support Hope," Victoria said.
"I also want the community to understand how important it is to support and fund programs like AVID and ETS because they truly work hard to support our students and make sure they are successful after high school."
It was on Harvard's campus where Emanuel decided that was the school for her. While, she has been waitlisted she said, "I have faith in God that it will be done."
In addition, Emanuel is waiting to make her final decision based on acceptance letters from University of Georgia, Spelman College, Duke University, Mercer University and Seton Hall University.
Emanuel said her career goal is to become a lawyer — owning her own practices around the world and to become a Supreme Court Justice of the United States.
She serves as an intern for Copeland, Haugabrook and Walker law firm.
Her accomplishments and memberships include the Student Mentoring In Life & Education program, National BETA club, past president of Future Business Leaders of America, Georgia Girls State, Recycling Club, Pearls for Girls Mentoring and National Society of High School Scholars.
"It feels very surreal to be creating my own legacy and bringing positivity to Black teen girls. I continue to ask myself 'why me?' but my faith is one of the things that I am most proud of because I know God is always there," Emanuel said.
"I am ready to go to the top and not stopping until I reach that mark."
Emanuel College Acceptance List:
1. Alabama State University
2. Wingate University
3. University of Maryland
4. Grambling State University
5. Huston-Tillotson University
6. Jackson State University
7. Alabama A&M University
8. Georgia State University
9. Edward Waters University
10. Bethune-Cookman University
11. Wilberforce University
12. Clark Atlanta University
13. Mercer University
14. Columbus State University
15. Wesleyan University
16. The University of Alabama
17. Kennesaw State University
18. North Carolina Central University
19. South Carolina State University
20. Voorhees University
21. Tougaloo College
22. Louisiana State University
23. Miles College
24. Hollins University
25. Hampton University
26. Benedict College
27. Coppin State University
28. Charleston Southern University
29. Tennessee State University
30. Converse University
31. Brenau University
32. The University of Houston
33. Seton Hall University
34. Birmingham Southern University
35. Fort Valley State University
36. Johnson and Wales University
37. University of North Florida
38. Taylor University
39. Salem College
40. Valdosta State University
41. Trinity Christian College
42. Mississippi State University
43. Bellarmine University
44. Fayetteville State University
45. Stillman College
46. Paul Quinn College
47. Oglethorpe University
48. Shaw University
49. Mount Saint Mary University
50. Wellesley University