Micheline Diakite, right, is honored as a “Portraits of Success” recipient by John Porter at the April 28 SFA Gala.
“My parents came to this country for a better life and better chances, both for themselves and for me. Because of the Scholarship Fund, I have kept their dream alive.” — Scholarship recipient Cindy Do
To the chant of “We Are the Titans,” students from the T.C. Williams High School class of 2018 entered the ballroom of the Mark Center Hilton April 28 for the 32nd annual Scholarship Fund of Alexandria Gala.
With 560 attendees, the gala was the largest in the event’s history and raised more than $440,000 to send students in need to college.
“This was a record-breaking year for scholarship applications,” said scholarship recipient Cindy Do, who spoke on behalf of the class of 2018 scholarship recipients. “That means there are more students with dreams but also more students with needs. On behalf of all of us — thank you.”
Do, a lacrosse player and co-captain of TC’s cheerleading squad, holds a 4.0 GPA and will attend the University of Virginia in the fall with plans to become a physician’s assistant. Her parents immigrated to the U.S. from Vietnam and like many of her fellow scholarship recipients, she will be the first in her family to attend college.
“My parents came to this country for a better life and better chances, both for themselves and for me,” Do said. “Because of the Scholarship Fund, I have kept their dream alive.”
The gala also honored three “Portraits of Success” past scholarship recipients from the class of 1998: Micheline Diakite, senior construction manager for Boston Properties; Clark Mercer, chief of staff to Gov. Ralph Northam; and Dr. Kenneth Shumate, a dentist at Waldorf Dental Care.
Incoming Alexandria City Public Schools Superintendent Gregory Hutchings, Jr. also attended the event. Hutchings, an Alexandria native and graduate of T.C. Williams, was a scholarship fund recipient in 1995.
“I am a former scholarship recipient,” Hutchings said. “That scholarship changed the trajectory of my life.”
For more information, visit www.alexscholarshipfund.org.