High Point University and Say Yes Guilford are pleased to announce five Guilford County Schools seniors have been awarded Say Yes Scholarships, which will cover tuition, fees and books at the university beginning this fall. Two of the scholarships are dedicated each year to students who represent the first generation in their family to go to college.  


Each student will also join the Bonner Leader Program at HPU. These outstanding students displayed excellence in the classroom and leadership in the community. Since partnering with Say Yes Guilford, HPU has committed nearly $3.6 million to First Generation and Say Yes Scholars.


“There’s no question that High Point University’s transformational growth positively impacts our surrounding community, and our partnership with Say Yes Guilford is an example of that,” says HPU President Nido Qubein. “We appreciate the talented Guilford County students joining the HPU family.”


Say Yes Guilford CEO Wendy Poteat shares Qubein’s enthusiasm to provide full-tuition scholarships to local students.


“We are thrilled to see the achievements and potential recognized in these GCS graduates,” she says. “They are on their way to living their dreams, and we are so grateful this partnership can provide them support on that journey.”


These five First Generation and Say Yes Scholars will begin classes this fall as part of HPU’s Class of 2025:


Jenny AguirreRagsdale High School: Aguirre hopes to help those experiencing homelessness during her time at HPU and after graduation. A co-worker recommended Aguirre consider HPU, and she’s so glad she did.


“After visiting HPU, it seemed like such a wonderful place to learn. It really seemed like they cared about me and my education,” she says.


Trinity De RisioNorthwest Guilford: Look for this first-generation college student in the lab as she plans to major in biology. De Risio says she wouldn’t be where she is today without the support of her parents.


“They are almost more excited than I am about me going to college because they never had the opportunity to go. And for their child to have the opportunity to go on a full ride to the college of her choice, that’s incredible.” 


Destiny MathisT. Wingate Andrews High School: She watched her Nana then her mother battle and beat cancer, and now Mathis plans to show her tenacity by being the first in the family to go to college. She plans to work as a physical therapist and support her mom the way she always supported her.


“I was worried about how I was going to pay for college. When I found out I was really excited, and my mom was in tears,” says Mathis. 


Christian TaylorGrimsley High School: HPU was Taylor’s top choice from the very start. The aspiring video-game developer says he wouldn’t be realizing this dream were it not for his family, friends and community.


“I’ve come to realize these months leading up to graduation, there are always people who truly support me throughout these 17 years, helping me to be where I am today,” says Taylor.


Toheed ZamanHigh Point Central: Zaman’s mother left Pakistan to secure the very best education for her four daughters. Now her third daughter is about realize that dream. Zaman plans to study medicine and become a surgeon. 


“Education is like enlightenment. It gives you the ability to do anything in the world,” Zaman says. 


High Point University partners with Say Yes Guilford to provide five scholarships for full tuition and fees available to qualifying students with a family income below $75,000. There are also five Say Yes Choice Grants (a $5,000 award) available to qualifying students with a family income above $75,000. 


Since its inception, Say Yes Guilford has awarded over $11.1 million to GCS graduates, and their partnership with over 100 private colleges and universities provided another $25.9 million for a total impact of over $37 million.


Say Yes Guilford is committed to providing access to support services and scholarships designed to prepare Guilford County Schools’ students for success in college, career and life.