Amplify Scholars: The iMentor-KIPP Scholarship Program

We are inspired by the idealism and moral clarity of this generation of young people. As such, iMentor and KIPP are partnering to create an annual scholarship that will help amplify their voices through their college journey.

About the Scholarship

We will select 15 outstanding KIPP graduates to join the Amplify Scholars Program. iMentor will work closely with KIPP Forward (formerly KIPP Through College) staff to ensure scholars are building the knowledge and skills to thrive in college and beyond.

Amplify Scholars will receive:

  • Stipends for critical expenses outside of tuition and room & board.
  • A one-on-one mentor who will support them through their educational and professional pathways.
  • An invitation to Amplify Scholars Academy, a 3-day retreat
  • Programming, events, and resources differentiated by year to ensure scholars persist and succeed throughout their college journey
  • Intentional opportunities to build community with fellow scholars through Zoom hangouts, our Amplify Scholars Book Club, and our growing Affinity Groups

Meet the 2022 Class of Amplify Scholars

Alejandro Armas
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Alejandro Armas

University of Texas at Austin

KIPP Texas Public Schools – Austin

Alejandro Armas is a KIPP Austin Brave alumnus who intends to major in computer science at the University of Texas at Austin. He believes that technology will only become more prevalent in society and wants to be at the forefront of that by creating software products that will leave a lasting impact on people’s lives. During his time in high school, Alejandro dedicated his time outside of school at DevLaunchers where he learned to code, mentored other students, and completed an internship. He hopes to use the knowledge he gained and will gain to eventually start his own tech startup in the future.

Arison Cruz      
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Arison Cruz      

Colgate University

KIPP NYC Public Schools

Arison is the kind of student that excels in anything he does, academics and sports. Arison has been a leader in Track and Field since he was a freshman at Fordham Prep High School, getting MVP status and helping coach other students. He has been selected as a College Board Hispanic and Black Scholar and maintained honor roll status through the pandemic. He took part in the Honors Society and tutored freshmen in Algebra. He is hoping to major in sociology at Colgate University.

Oswaldo Dominguez
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Oswaldo Dominguez

University of California, Berkeley

KIPP SoCal Public Schools

Oswaldo is a KIPP Adelante Preparatory and High Tech High Media Arts alumnus. Oswaldo is a proud son to immigrant parents who have given him the opportunity to dream and further his education. Oswaldo is interested in community development and the field of engineering which is why he will be pursuing a career in civil engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. He plans to build bridges, buildings, and highways, but mainly, he is determined to build a bridge connecting underrepresented communities to the endless amount of resources that have not always been there for minorities.

Cianna Hernandez
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Cianna Hernandez

California State University-Northridge

KIPP SoCal Public Schools

Cianna is a KIPP Los Angeles College Preparatory and Felicitas & Gonzalo Mendez High School alumna in Boyle Heights, Los Angeles. She plans to major in business marketing at California State University-Northridge in hopes to make the fashion industry more inclusive. While in high school, Cianna was yearbook editor in chief, a member of the Self Love Club, head of Set Design in Theater, and created a mural at the Geffen Playhouse titled, “Solidarity Through Art & Unity.” She is passionate about the arts and expresses her creativity through fashion. Hearing people around her tell her how shopping for their body type is a struggle and they don’t feel confident in themselves because of the limited styles for plus size and petite women fueled her passion for providing the change millions of people desire. Her goal is to make everyone feel beautiful through what they wear and be represented in the fashion world.

Marysol Hernandez
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Marysol Hernandez

University of Utah

KIPP SoCal Public Schools

Marysol, a senior at Alliance Margaret M. Bloomfield High School who is a member of the National Honor Society, the girls soccer team, and the senior committee, is first in her family to go to college. She plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in accountancy at the University of Utah. Marysol’s resilience is evident as she grew up without parents and supported her grandmother in raising her brothers and cousins. Being the eldest taught her numerous leadership skills, which she aims to apply in university and desires to one day establish her own organization that assists low-income families.

Toni Jackson
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Toni Jackson

University of Pittsburgh

KIPP DC Public Schools

Toni plans to major in professional media communications with a minor in Portuguese at the University of Pittsburgh, and eventually work in the public relations field. She is the co-Editor-in-Chief of her school newspaper, and a Teen Aide at the DC Public Library. Throughout her junior and senior years, she has been a full-time dual-enrollment student at George Washington University. Outside of school, she interns at LearnServe International and plans their annual Student Action Summit, which encourages young people to take social action starting in their own communities.

Shavanna Kenner
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Shavanna Kenner

The University of Pennsylvania

KIPP Philadelphia Public Schools

Whether it is building robots as the captain of the Robotics Team, creating school spirit as a cheerleader, or supporting her teammates as team manager, Shavanna loves working with others and building community at KIPP DuBois Collegiate Academy. Shavanna’s helping hands don’t stop there, as she has also volunteered with the Christ Church of God and with the Children’s Village Child Care Center as well as caring for her younger cousins during COVID. Shavanna also considers herself a creative and loves to paint, draw, and try new things such as learning Korean during the pandemic. Additionally, Shavanna is very focused on academic success and has not only maintained a stellar grade point average but has also explored dual enrollment courses. Shavanna will be an impactful contributor to her college community next fall at The University of Pennsylvania where she plans to major in nursing.

Camila Mata-Charre
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Camila Mata-Charre

University of Texas at Austin

KIPP Texas Public Schools- Austin

Camila, a Kipp Austin Brave High School alum, plans on majoring in civil engineering at the University of Texas at Austin in the Cockrell School of Engineering. Camila hopes to represent two of the major minorities in this field, which are women and Hispanics. As a first-generation student, she dreams of building a better future not only for herself but for her family as well.

Sebastian Mora
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Sebastian Mora

Trinity University

KIPP Texas Public Schools – San Antonio

Sebastian Mora is a KIPP University Preparatory High School alum and will be attending Trinity University with a double major in global Latinx studies and Spanish. Growing up in a Hispanic household and in a predominantly Hispanic city, Sebastian wants to learn the history of their culture and how it came to be. They hope to become a professor in this area and teach other students about their history and become a published researcher. Though making a college decision was not easy, Sebastian is really excited to attend Trinity University.

Khamani Murphy
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Khamani Murphy

University of Colorado - Colorado Springs

KIPP Colorado Schools

Khamani Murphy is a Colorado native and a KIPP Northeast Denver Leadership Academy alum. He finds joy in sports and being engaged with his community, particularly through his involvement with his high school’s Student Board of Education. Khamani intends to attend the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs and pursue a business administration major while minoring in journalism. Being involved with the school board has provided Khamani leadership opportunities he hopes to continue to pursue in college.

Jerry Nguyen
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Jerry Nguyen

University of California, Irvine

KIPP Public Schools Northern California

Jerry graduated Suma Cum Laude from KIPP San Jose Collegiate, leaving behind a legacy of community service. Jerry not only served as Student Council President, but he was the graphic design lead for the District’s Newsletter and the President of Interact Club and Vice President of Key Club, an international non-profit organization, where he explored different ways to express altruism to his community. He plans to continue his love of giving back throughout college.

Maria Prenza Mora
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Maria Prenza Mora

University of Massachusetts

KIPP Massachusetts Public Charter Schools

Maria is an extraordinary alum from KIPP Academy Lynn Collegiate. She plans to major in nursing and minor in psychology at the University of Massachusetts. While excelling as a high honor roll student in her junior and senior years, she worked as a nursing assistant in the Beth Israel Lahey Health System at Beverly Hospital. She always had a passion for increasing healthcare opportunities for people in her community, especially after living in the Dominican Republic where so many lives were lost due to having limited access to medical care. It is important for her to pursue a career where she can care for expecting parents as well as patients who need intensive care. As a nurse she aims to help people feel supported in times when they may have no one else.

Darwin Restrepo De La Cruz
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Darwin Restrepo De La Cruz

Yale University

KIPP NYC Public Schools

Darwin, a KIPP NYC College Prep alum, is heading to college at Yale University having taken several college-level courses. He attended the Wake Forest Summer Immersion program where he took a class in human thought processes and another psychology class at Borough of Manhattan Community College. He hopes to major in chemistry and pursue a career in the STEM field as a climate scientist or working to engineer new vaccines. He is also the president of the RALPHLUK fraternity at his high school, where he continues to uplift the school community through service programs. He helped to found the Gay Student Alliance at his high school when he saw a need for a safe space for LGBTQIA+ students to convene and discuss issues. His work ethic is unmatched as he navigated being a quarterback for the football team and several extracurricular activities throughout high school.

Shaiyan Sanchez
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Shaiyan Sanchez

Duke University

KIPP Philadelphia Public Schools

With a keen entrepreneurial spirit, great compassion for others and passion for learning, Shaiyan is bound to be a standout at Duke University next year. Shaiyan has taken advantage of every learning opportunity presented to her from dual enrollment courses to special enrichment classes. Beyond her academic achievements, Shaiyan has turned many of her life passions into small business opportunities. When she developed a talent for baking, she started Shy’s Savory Sweets. Her passion for make-up, skin and hair care forged three other small businesses, and yet she still had time to develop her leadership and service skills at Deer Meadows Nursing Home as a dietary aide. At Duke, Shaiyan hopes to study pre-med and plans to attend medical school to become a surgeon.

About iMentor

iMentor partners with public high schools across the country to  match students who are first generation college-goers with a college-educated mentor. This 1:1 mentor relationship focuses on college persistence and success. Students in the iMentor program graduate college at nearly double the rate of their peers. They also develop powerful personal relationships with mentors, develop the skills and mindsets necessary for post-secondary success, and build strong links between high school performance, post-secondary pursuits, and their highest career aspiration. Since 1999, iMentor has supported 29,000 mentoring relationships. This year, iMentor will serve 8,411 students in 17 communities throughout the country.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Amplify Scholars will receive stipends to cover critical expenses including school year support and technology costs associated with summer enrichment opportunities.

  • To be eligible, you must be a current KIPP High School senior or KIPP Middle School alumni in their senior year of high school. Ideal candidates should demonstrate iMentor’s core values, listed above.

  • We encourage applicants to make sure their application and essays demonstrate their leadership and civic mindedness in high school.

  • The application period was from October 1, 2021 to February 11, 2021 at 11:59pm PST.

  • No. 8th grade completers (KIPP middle school graduates) can also apply.

  • No. This program is only open to high school seniors, not KIPP alumni.

  • Yes! We encourage you to apply. Your citizenship status will not be taken into consideration during the selection process.

  • When you apply, you will be asked to enter the name and email address of two recommenders. They will each be asked to answer specific questions in a recommendation letter. They will each be asked to answer specific questions in a recommender portal on the application website.

  • We will inform all candidates about selection by email in Spring 2022.

  • If you have any other questions, feel free to email Tevera Stith at TStith@kipp.org