Western Washington University Alumni Association

Tess Trosko

Major - Anthropology
Hometown - Ridgefield, WA

I have always been driven, on a path to succeed. When I was in middle school, I started taking advanced classes so that I could be ahead in high school, too. Once sophomore year came, I took the test for running start and passed all three areas on the first try. I knew that by deciding to do running start, I would be saving my family and myself money in the long run. My parents are both still paying on their student loans and I see just how expensive college can be. Because of this, I knew I needed to find ways to make my college experience cheaper. Junior year, I began running start and graduated from high school with my Associates Degree in Arts. My success with running start has driven me towards attending a four-year university and led me to apply for and receive this scholarship.

“…I would like to thank you so much for the opportunities your scholarship has provided me and the doors it will open.”

During the spring quarter of my senior year, the cost of attending college finally struck me. I realized that at the end of the day I was the one responsible for the $20,000 cost of college each year. At this point, I began applying for as many scholarships as I could find that I fit the criteria for – both locally and nationally. While looking on the Facebook page for admitted students to Western, I found this scholarship and decided to apply for it. Being a recipient of the WWU Alumni Association’s Scholarship has made my life so much less stressful and given me confidence to continue to apply for scholarships. I know that with this money, I will be able to do great things by continuing my education.

When I am not studying, I enjoy spending time with my friends and being outdoors. I love walking with my dog through our neighborhood, saying hello to neighbors, and basking in the sunshine. Maintaining friendships is important to me so I tend to spend a lot of time watching movies, playing games, and building fires with my friends.

Running start has shaped my life in a positive way. I have looked at people who are twenty or thirty years older than me, going to college for the first time, and realized just how important education is. It has made me understand that you cannot get anywhere in today’s world without a degree. Now, I look at education as the key to my future, the key to getting a good job, and the key to being happy.