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'Prize Patrol' Doles Out Scholarships To D.C. Students

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Sarai Reed, a senior at Duke Ellington School of the Arts, was one of nine DC students to receive scholarships to George Washington University.
Jessica Gould
Sarai Reed, a senior at Duke Ellington School of the Arts, was one of nine DC students to receive scholarships to George Washington University.

George Washington University President Steven Knapp strides into Benjamin Banneker Academic High School in Northwest D.C. and ducks into a classroom. He apologizes for the interruption. But, he says, he has an announcement.

"You are being offered a [Stephen Joel] Trachtenberg Scholarship to George Washington University, which is a full scholarship for four years. And we're very much looking forward to seeing you join our community in the fall," he says.

Every year, the university offers full scholarships to a group of graduating seniors from D.C. schools. This year, Chidi Agbaeruneke is one of them.

"My knees are still shaking," he says. "My heart is still racing."

Agbaeruneke volunteers at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, and hopes to become a cardiologist one day. He says the scholarship is a huge financial relief.

Plus, he says, it sends an important message to his siblings: "That they can do it as long as they continue to persevere and stay determined."

Nine students from across the city received the scholarship this year, which covers more than $200,000 in college expenses.

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