This year, Students for Life of America (SFLA) awarded three Standing With You Christian Schools Scholarship awards to religious universities in order to assist pregnant and parenting students at the chosen institutions — and we’re happy to introduce three mothers who have benefitted from this year’s scholarship. These students will have varying financial aid paid directly to their school next semester, and after reading their stories of courage and love, you’ll see these wonderful women deserved every penny. Without further ado, meet our newest scholarship recipients:
- Teresa Ripoll
In late 2020, when Teresa Ripoll and her boyfriend (now fiancé) found out they were pregnant, they were shocked and initially abortion minded, despite being from conservative, pro-life families. On the way to her abortion appointment, Ripoll was hit with the conviction that life is so much greater than the inconvenience of being pregnant, and she immediately detoured.
Today, Ripoll says that she and her fiancé are stronger than ever in their faith, love, and pro-life values. While life with her 14-month-old daughter isn’t always easy, her support from her family and pro-life community has helped them along the way. She will graduate from the University of St. Thomas – Houston next year with a BBA/MBA in Finance. She has been awarded $1,500 from the Standing With You Christian Schools Scholarship award to help fund her education.
Ripoll said, “I currently serve as President of the University of St. Thomas’ Celts for Life and my unplanned pregnancy has helped me find my calling and motivated me to get involved in the pro-life movement.”
- Courtney Docherty
As a senior at Ave Maria University studying music, Courtney Docherty gave birth to her sweet baby girl, Rosalia, just recently. A couple days after her baby was born, the doctors detected a heart murmur which needed care, and Docherty decided to delay her school graduation by one semester in order to get her daughter the help she needs.
Next spring, Docherty will graduate, and her final semester will be her most intense, with seven classes meaning many long hours of lessons, practicing, and extra rehearsal time. Despite this future workload and a learning disability which causes her to require extra time for study, she says she is even more motivated to succeed now that she has her daughter. Graduating with her baby at her side will be one of her fondest accomplishments. She has been awarded $750 from the Standing With You Christian Schools Scholarship award.
- Mary Pogasic
Mary Pogasic has been a student parent since 2019 when she and her boyfriend (now husband) found out they were pregnant in her freshman year of college. Through much prayer and help from others, her husband was able to continue school full-time while she took a year off to have their son and adjust to life as a parent. After their first son was born, they were united in marriage, and she eventually returned to school at Ave Maria University, getting pregnant again with their second son a few months into full-time schooling.
Now, as they balance parenting, school, and work lives, they have been blessed with a third child who was just recently born. Pogasic and her husband reject the idea that their children have ever stopped them from “fulfilling their dreams” and maintain that life is much sweeter as they all chase them together. Instead of holding her family back, they motivate her even more. She has been awarded $750 from the Standing With You Christian Schools Scholarship award.
She said, “While providing a culture of support and encouragement for student parents, financial need is one of the largest challenges that we face so scholarship opportunities like this are extremely helpful and vital for us to continue our education.”
SFLA has also awarded Benedictine College with the same scholarship for their pregnant and parenting students, and the deadline for that campus has been extended until the spring. If you know a pregnant or parenting student at Benedictine, make sure they know about this wonderful opportunity to honor their hard work as both parent and student! To learn more or apply, click HERE.
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