Sixth-quarter student Braden Brunson received a scholarship from the Aviation Foundation last week, adding another award to his growing list of scholarship wins while a student at PIA. The Board of Directors from the Aviation Foundation visited PIA to issue the award. Linda Benning, President, Ralph Beatty, Vice President, Myles Lilley, Treasurer, and Sandy Levandosky, Secretary, hope to return to PIA in the upcoming terms to issue additional scholarships to deserving students.
Awards are available through the Fall 2022 quarter for PIA Pittsburgh students in their sixth quarter. Please see Jason Mongan for full scholarship details.
Braden Brunson was selected as a mikeroweWORKS Work Ethic Scholarship winner immediately upon starting classes at PIA, adding to the two scholarships he had received directly out of high school. Since then, he has continued to apply for scholarships to assist in the funding of his education. Sighting his parent’s lessons of fiscal responsibility, Brunson knew that the burden of student loans was not something he wanted to take on.
“I didn’t want to take on loans or debts,” says Brunson, “I hadn’t had to do that in the past with any big purchase I had made. I knew there was free money out there, all I had to do was sit down for a few hours and type up essays and references.” Many students desire the freedom of exiting school without excessive debt. Despite this desire, Forbes Magazine notes that an estimated $100 million in scholarship money is left unawarded. The issue? Lack of applicants. Forbes spoke with Ayden Berkey, who founded Access Scholarships, who noted that students feel intimidated by the application process.
Brunson thinks that the hardest part of applying for scholarships is the first step – committing to sitting down to write the essay. “That’s the hardest thing about it, and it isn’t even that bad. Most of them are 500-word essays.” Brunson also mentioned that while he is effective in formulating his thoughts in speech, it doesn’t always translate when he is typing out an essay. “I am terrible with grammar. I have my girlfriend or my grandparents look at my essays and help me correct grammar and make sure everything flows correctly.”
Brunson continues to receive scholarship awards not only based on his academic and personal merits but simply because he provides himself the opportunity to win.
“Every single scholarship that I see I am eligible for, I apply for,” says Brunson. He notes one of his scholarship applications allowed him to apply for roughly 18 scholarships at one time. “I got one of the 18,” he says. “I hear a lot of people saying they don’t meet the requirements. I feel like just because you might not be eligible in one category, I think you should still apply. Worst case, it’s a no and you move on.”
Congratulations to Braden on his continued scholarship success!