Gotta Have Sole


Every Sole Has a Story®

2017 Gotta Have Sole Scholarship Winners

We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to continue their education and realize their dreams. So in 2016 we launched the Gotta Have School scholarship program to provide extraordinary students in need with the funds to take a step forward.

In 2017, our second year we received over 3,600 amazing applications. From this group we selected FIVE outstanding young people who are each receiving a $1,000 scholarship for school.

These students have defied their odds and shown endless strength in the face of challenges. They are passionate individuals who give back to their community at every turn. And they have huge goals for their future. So watch out world, they’re coming for you and are going to shake things up.

Announcing the Gotta Have School scholarship class of  2017!


Daniel Hamm, Georgia
I am a senior at Maynard Jackson High School in Atlanta, Georgia. I am also the Salutatorian for my graduating class. I am a hard-worker, and I believe in the importance of service as a means to change my community and education as a means to success. In my local community, I am involved in the Velocity Mentorship Program, the Maynard Jackson Youth Foundation Leadership Academy, and my church’s outreach ministry. I plan to attend either Emory University, Northwestern University, or Vanderbilt University, where I plan to double major in Political Science and Business and minor in Chinese. Being selected for this scholarship will help me have an impact that extends beyond who I am and will provide me the support that I will need to reach my ultimate goal of owning my own law firm.


Misael Campos, California
I am a senior at Design Science Early College High School. I am a determined and persistent young man who aspires to become a physicist. My goal is to change the world through research in alternate energy sources, specifically fusion energy. When I am not working to realize this dream, I love to run and participate in Student Government and JROTC. I will be attending Princeton University in the fall of 2017.

Riley Moran, Florida
I’m a Florida native—raised 100% on sunshine—and I’ll be going to Tulane University in the fall. After college, I want to help better the school system through education policy, or to advocate for education in countries where it may be lacking. When I’m not studying like a maniac or working with The Spring (a local domestic abuse shelter), I like to make movies with my friends, write stories about the universe, or nap on the beach.


Jai Shanani, New Jersey
I am a rising freshman at Rutgers University- New Brunswick pursuing cell biology and neuroscience in preparation for a career in medicine. I have aspired to be a doctor ever since a young age and found myself attracted to the specialty of emergency medicine while working as an EMT with the Clark Volunteer Rescue Squad. Besides focusing on my academics, I also participated in various extracurricular activities at Robert Wood Johnson Hospital, Edison Chinese School, and Edison Hindi School, giving me unparalleled exposure to diverse cultures and my hopeful career. In my free time, I like to read Ian Fleming novels and spend time with my friends and family.


Maria Scanlan, Kansas
I am currently a senior at Saint Thomas Aquinas High School, and I plan on studying neuroscience and public health in college while following the pre-med track. Throughout high school, I’ve been part of an effort that has pioneered a suicide prevention program in my community, and I have volunteered at a domestic abuse shelter. These experiences have shown me how much I love serving others and have inspired me to become a doctor. My dream is to work with memory care patients and work to find a cure for Alzheimer’s.


The Gotta Have School scholarship class of  2016!

My name is Malaika Michel-Fuller and I am a senior enrolled in the International Baccalaureate Diploma at Palisade High School. I will be attending the University of Northern Colorado to pursue an English degree with an emphasis in secondary education. With my degree, I plan to teach on my Native American reservation in western Montana, and as an educator I hope to encourage Native students to rise beyond socioeconomic obstacles and historical stereotypes to pursue their dreams through higher education. The Gotta Have School Scholarship is so meaningful to me because the funds will enable me to follow my dreams and earn a degree in a field I feel passionately about so that I can give back to my Native community. I enjoy volunteering in my local community, and I am most proud of my project “Bella Baskets”, a service initiative, which fundraises to provide items for my town’s local domestic abuse shelter.



My name is Priscila Romero and I’m truly honored to have received this scholarship. I am currently living in the beautiful city of San Diego and attend Crawford High School. Recently I have been occupied with volunteering at my high school tutoring math at the Crawford Math Center. I intend to study engineering in college. Being selected for this scholarship means a great deal to me because it allows me to pursue my passion, engineering, by paying some expenses towards that goal.




My name is Keiron Fontaine and I am a senior at Thomas Edison High School in Alexandria, Virginia. My plan is to study Mechanical Engineering at either Virginia Tech or the University of Virginia once I graduate from high school. When I’m not busy with school or running track, I like to spend my time volunteering with the various clubs I am in, whether it be helping out in my school or my community. I enjoy volunteering with my friends because it makes the experience more enjoyable, and we all have a love for volunteering. Being selected for this scholarship means a lot to me because it shows that my hard work and effort is not going unnoticed, and this money will help provide for the opportunity I get to further my education.



My name is Katie Dumas and I am a senior at Cranston High School West who dreams of becoming an emergency room physician. I will be attending the University of Maine with a major in Biochemistry to help me reach this goal. I played basketball for my school and peer tutor as often as I can. When not in school, I work at Cold Stone Creamery and enjoy reading in my spare time.




 My name is Alina Herrera and I’m currently a senior at MacArthur High School. I’ve been involved in AVID, drill team, ambassador’s, and Model United Nations. I have volunteered at the West and Central Irving Public Libraries, Las Colinas OBGYN, and interned at The Elisa Project. On top of being an active member of my community and working a part-time job, I’ve managed to remain in the top 7% of my class and plan on attending the University of Texas at Austin for the College of Natural Sciences next fall. I intend to study biology and pursue a career in the medical field. I am extremely honored to be receiving the Gotta Have School scholarship because of the organization’s marvelous mission to provide aid to children in need.

Amanda Ashton