When Joshua Benjamin and Ethan Kostishak began their journey at Brophy College Preparatory (BCP) as freshmen in August 2012, they had no idea that four years later their hard work in the classroom and dedication to the Brophy mission of “Men for Others” would lead to recognition as Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS). Benjamin and Kostishak are two of 1000 2016 scholarship recipients nationally, out of a pool of 53,000 applicants – one of the most competitive candidate classes in history, according to the Gates Foundation.
"I am thrilled for Josh and Ethan,” said Brophy Principal Bob Ryan. “They are remarkable young men who have been standouts at Brophy since their very first days on our campus. They deserve every opportunity that the Gates Millennium Scholarship now ensures they'll be able to pursue. I know that they will do great things for the world and their status as Gates Millennium Scholars provides them a platform from which they can serve as inspirations to younger students."
A Gates Millennium Scholarship, one of the most prestigious awards a graduating senior can receive, covers a recipient’s undergraduate college expenses, including tuition, fees and living expenses. In addition, Gates scholars may be eligible for funding through master’s and doctoral levels, if they choose graduate studies in the fields of computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health or science. The GMS program also includes activities and resources to assist with the scholar’s continued development as a leader, including peer leadership conferences, academic empowerment services, mentoring programs, and online resource centers.
Benjamin has chosen Harvard, and Kostishak will attend Pomona. Benjamin says that when he received his letter of congratulations, “I didn’t realize what had just happened, then it hit me and I started laughing out of excitement and gratitude. I never would have imagined that I would be a Gates Scholar. I felt butterflies for the rest of the night and into the next day.”
Bill Gates Sr., who runs the Gates Foundation and who is the father of Microsoft founder, Bill Gates Jr., explains, “The goal of education is to empower individuals who can affect change through innovation and leadership,” said Bill Gates Sr., who runs the Gates Foundation and who is the father of Microsoft founder, Bill Gates Jr. “GMS is about providing that opportunity – the chance for you to get the education you need to grow as professionals, and to grow as leaders.”