TORRINGTON – On Thursday, April 22, Torrington High School (THS) senior Jayce Myrtle was awarded the Kaiser Foundation Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded to 10 high school seniors each year in Wyoming.
The Kaiser Foundation Scholarship awards students with $4,000 for four years and it can be used at any college or university in the country.
The Kaiser Foundation was founded by Curt Kaiser, founder of the Kaiser and Company in 1986 and is headquartered in Cody, Wyoming. The foundation has awarded scholarships every year since the foundation was established and only Wyoming high school students are eligible to receive it.
Before Myrtle’s application was sent off to the Kaiser Foundation, a committee at THS went over four different applications before settling on Myrtle’s as the best applicant to submit to the Kaiser Foundation.
“We really look at their story when picking a nominee,” said counselor Michele Ogburn. “We really place a lot of emphasis on their grit and ability to overcome obstacles.”
This is the third time in the last four years that a student from THS has won the Kaiser Foundation Scholarship.
When Myrtle decided to apply for the scholarship, she knew that her essay needed to be good in order to separate herself from the other candidates.
“I feel like I could go pretty in depth with life experiences in my essay,” Myrtle said. “I wrote about things I’ve been through with my family and was honest without sugarcoating anything.”
While writing her essay, Myrtle wanted to focus on overcoming any obstacle that is thrown her way and how even when things aren’t going the way you want them to go, you should need to put your head down and keep going.
This was the third different scholarship that Myrtle has received. She also received the Wyrulec scholarship and the West Coast scholarship.
When she graduates from THS, Myrtle plans to attend Eastern Wyoming College (EWC) for a year before transferring to the University of Wyoming to study Psychology. Myrtle has already been taking a few courses at EWC while she's been enrolled at THS.
“When I graduate I want to be a clinical psychologist or counselor,” Myrtle said. “I want to at least [Wyoming] for a little bit, but coming back is fine too, but I definitely do want to branch out a bit.”
Myrtle found out she won the scholarship at 8 p.m. and was very shocked when she received the call. At first she thought the person had called the wrong number since she didn’t recognize the phone number.
When she initially applied for the scholarship, she didn’t think she would actually win. She said it was just another scholarship she applied for but didn’t think she would win.
“I was very overwhelmed and thankful,” Myrtle said. “That’s 16 grand that my parents don’t have to worry about.”
Myrtle thought this was one of those big scholarships that she would never get and kind of forgot she had applied for it until she received the phone call telling her she had won.
While her main focus is on her academics, Myrtle is also a member of the National Honor Society, plays on the THS varsity girls soccer team, was a tutor at the writing lab and she was named Prom Queen.