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Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College sophomores Aijie Manalansan and Elijah Wooden were named semifinalists for the national Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship Award, part of the largest private scholarship in the United States available exclusively for students and graduates from two-year colleges.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation selected a total of 459 semifinalists out of 1,600 applicants from across the United States. Only three students were chosen from Oklahoma.

Winners of the scholarship receive up to $55,000 per year to further their education. To qualify, an applicant must be a recent graduate from a two-year college or a current sophomore with a 3.5 cumulative grade point average or higher, demonstrate financial need, and plan to transfer to a four-year university by the fall of 2024.

Manalansan, a social sciences major from Miami, has always wanted a college degree, and she plans to transfer to the University of Oklahoma to pursue archaeology.

“NEO became a starting point and gave me a clear picture of my goals,” said Manalansan. “Because of NEO, I am now heading into success.”

Wooden, a business administration major from Muskogee, plans to attend the University of Arkansas in the fall to pursue a bachelor’s degree in information systems with a concentration in business analytics.

“NEO has impacted me greatly by providing me with remarkable opportunities to grow in leadership, knowledge, and character,” said Wooden. “By being a part of multiple clubs and organizations, I have been able to gain vital experiences that will prepare me for my future.”

Officials will announce the winners of the Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship in May.

For more information, contact Bobbie Pennington at bpennington@neo.edu or 918-540-6971.

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