Photo courtesy of MCU
Ryan Kim, winner of the MCU 2019 Willie James Memorial Scholarship

A Little Neck resident recently won the Municipal Credit Union’s (MCU) 2019 Willie James Memorial scholarship.

Stuyvesant High School senior Ryan Kim was one of nine recipients of the $5,000 prize. Kim shared that the money will go toward earning a degree in journalism and political science at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

Thirteen college-bound seniors also received $2,000 grants as part of the annual MCU Scholarship Program. MCU selected all of this year’s winners from a competitive pool of more than 350 applicants who exemplified strong academic performance, extracurricular activities and community service and involvement.

Applicants also had to obtain letters of recommendation and write an essay expressing their personal goals.

Kim said that his father is a member of the MCU and alerted him about the scholarship. The student shared that he was able to learn about credit unions and banking during the application process.

According to MCU, the scholarship program was born out of the credit union’s commitment to youth education and financial literacy. MCU members, a child or a grandchild of a member in good standing is eligible to apply. Over the past 24 years, MCU has awarded high school seniors nearly $1 million for higher education.

The high school senior graduated from Stuyvesant High School on June 26 and has his sights set on a journalism degree.

Kim joined his school’s paper in freshman year but a journalism workshop last summer solidified his interest in the field. He reported on an iconic Greenwich Village chess shop affected by gentrification.

“I learned how journalism is a super powerful vessel that highlights voices that may not be heard,” Kim said.

Kim shared that in addition to political science he is interested in pursuing Asian-American studies and the intersection of technology and journalism. His first day of college classes is at the end of September.


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