Eleni, 18 – FUNDED

Eleni Olivea Varlas has big goals and aspirations — and a tremendous amount of schooling in front of her in order to achieve her dream of being a pediatrician! So, this 1,000 Dreams Fund Scholarship recipient knows the power of financial assistance, which helps her focus on her studies without worrying about money. She’s planning to pursue a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences at the University of Maryland-Baltimore County.

What is your professional dream?

I want to become a pediatrician with my own practice.

How will you use the 1,000 Dreams Scholarship?

The scholarship will go directly to my tuition to fund my studying.

How is this scholarship helping you get closer to your dream?

With this scholarship, my goals and aspirations are one step closer to becoming a reality. The ability to earn an education without crippling student debt is something I hope to achieve so my quality of life as a working adult will have one less challenge — because I can continue moving forward without shackles.

I come from a single-family household where my mom supports my brother and me. She’s had zero help with my brother’s college education. So, I also want to help lessen her responsibilities with one less child to pay for.

What advice do you have for other young women who are wanting to pursue their dreams?

Any goal is achievable, but the road to success is a long and tiring journey that never finishes at the goal line. Keep creating new goals because being complacent does not get you ahead. The hard work will pay off in the end, though!

​Have you had any setbacks? How did you move past them?

Coronavirus really set me back in scholarships due to the lack of scholarship availability. However, I kept applying to scholarships all summer long and, by August, I was able to afford my first two semesters of college without loans or help from my mom.

What’s next for you? What is your next goal?

Earning As in all of my courses over my four undergraduate years while engaging in volunteering and research projects… then, my next goal will be getting into medical school!