‘Most Positive’ Detroit Grad Receives Over $1.7M In Scholarship Offers

·3 min read

Tatyana Alves, 17, is known for her sunny outlook and happy demeanor. This “Most Positive” attitude — that she was voted for having by her peers — has driven her success, which has seen the graduating high school senior receive an impressive college scholarship haul of $1.7 million in offers.

“I just want other people to thrive,” the Detroit native said. “Being positive helped me to find my purpose, and I think I’ve made an influence on a lot of people.”

The college-bound student initially stumbled across her K-12 entrance examination school in search of an academic challenge in 2019.

She eventually answered that call at The School of Marygrove, which promotes a commitment to developing “critical thinkers and community-minded citizens who have the skills and knowledge to be makers and leaders in the 21st century.”

Alves and 94 other high school seniors make up the first graduating class.

“Our school isn’t as well known, given that it is new,” she told the Detroit Free Press. “I wanted to be challenged, and I feel that an application (entrance-examination) school does that.”

“It’s pretty cool to make our name known,” Alves added in an interview with NBC affiliate WDIV-TV.

The incoming Eastern Michigan University freshman will be a business administration major when she starts this fall.

“I aspire to be an entrepreneur. Just so I can live life comfortably and give back to my community,” Alves said.

The outgoing senior found herself in a dark space during her sophomore year due to the “rough transition” to online schooling through the pandemic. Applying positivity to her goals became life-changing for her.

Soon enough, she had earned a 4.0 GPA, obtained her driver’s license and gotten a job at a local CVS as a sales associate, all of which increased her confidence and independence, per the outlet.

Her mother, Acquanetta Windham can’t help but boast of her “first baby going to college,” according to the Free Press.

“I’m so proud of her,” Windham said of her daughter. “She exceeded all expectations.”

As for the abundance of scholarship offers she received, the Detroit teen revealed actively launching her scholarship search in earnest when she was a junior, chalking up some of her success to a micro-scholarship site she discovered through a friend on TikTokRaise. Me.

According to WDIV-TV, however, Alves has “opted out of using” her scholarship money. This is because her education is already paid for thanks to Detroit Promise — a tuition-free path to college credentials eligible at 26 different Michigan colleges.

At the end of the day, Alves knows her story will serve as an inspiration to others, so she has her own advice for students: Stay connected to those who have taken an interest in your future, exhaust all resources and assistance available, stay locked into your scholarship search and apply positivity to your goals by “staying present” in the moment. 

“Everybody’s always worried about their future. I would say stay present because when you take care of the present, you take care of the past and the future,” the 17-year-old said.