EDWARDS – The NASA Armstrong Employee Exchange Council has awarded the 2021 Thomas W. Finch Memorial Scholarship to Divonte Williams, a 2021 graduate of Quartz Hill High School who will attend California State University, Northridge this fall.
“I plan to gain practical knowledge and experience throughout my academic career by taking advantage of any training, opportunities and other programs that become available,” Williams wrote in her essay. He said he would love to land a job with an exceptional employer like NASA, which would give him the opportunity to participate with geoscience research teams.
âI want to study theories and hypotheses about the earth’s crust and develop my own hypothesis about what is going on in the deeper layers,â he said.
The Finch Memorial Scholarship is available to sons and daughters of employees at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center and provides grantees with $ 2,000 per year for up to four years towards participation in a four-year college or university contingent. on full-time enrollment and maintaining a minimum of 3.0 or higher cumulative grade point average.
Williams is the son of Tameka Williams, who is an accountant at the center, and Damone Williams Sr. Williams’s in-laws are Jerald Herron and LaShondra Williams.
“I am proud of his determination and commitment to accomplish what he sets out to do, including academics and sports,” Tameka Williams said in a statement. âHe’s not giving up. He naturally has the drive and determination to achieve his goals.
Williams earned a cumulative GPA of 3.14 in his college education at Quartz Hill High. He was the captain of the college football team and the goalkeeper. He has also participated in the Quartz Hill High School Chamber Singers, where he served as Section Head, and the school’s Acapella Choir. Additionally, his community service included volunteering with Skid Row Motorcycle Club Feed the Homeless in 2019 and 2020 and with the Popeye Toy Run in 2017-2019.
Quartz Hill High choir director Annika Linde had Williams in her classes for three years.
âHe came to me on the recommendation of another student and I kind of threw him in there and said ‘go ahead’,â she said. âHe was enthusiastic and dedicated from the start. He has always been one of the most special people who work hard. I’m not at all surprised that he got this scholarship, that he won this scholarship because he has always been a great performer and has always been someone who deserves the best, highest rewards. awards, âLinde said on a phone call.
Linde wrote a recommendation letter for Williams last spring, in which she described Williams as generous and open-hearted.
âHe amplifies the best qualities of those around them while inspiring others with his humor and work ethic,â Linde wrote. “I pushed Divonte harder than any other student because he has repeatedly shown that he can take on more challenges than most.”
Linde added that Williams is a special singer.
âHe was able to hit any note I would ask for for any vocal part,â Linde said. âCertainly that combined with the work ethic made him the person I would turn to if there ever was a performance where we didn’t have someone capable of coming who was assigned to a certain part. I would teach him that part in addition to the part he was originally assigned to; most kids wouldn’t be able to do that.
Williams said his motivation to go to college began when his parents instilled in him the value of education and knowledge. “I can’t” was not part of his vocabulary.
His passion for the wonders of the earth is what makes him interested in geological science.
He believes geology is important because it examines not only the earth in its current state, but also how structures, organisms, and processes have changed over time and will continue to impact the earth. Living in Southern California also helped him become more aware of and captivated by the wonders of the Earth.
As a child, one of his hobbies was collecting stones. That interest has morphed into a career path, which he plans to begin by studying geological sciences this fall at California State University, Northridge. He’s eagerly awaiting advice from his older brother, Damone Williams Jr., who is also attending college.