Student Name: Larissa Neves
Scholarship Name: William M. Suttles Endowed Scholarship
B.S. ’20, Biology
Why Georgia State?
I’ve always loved living so close to Atlanta, so it just seemed right to attend college here.
Please share a few interesting facts about yourself:
- I played the violin when I was in high school.
- I did not know how to ride a bike until I was 10 years old.
- I ran my first half-marathon two years ago on Thanksgiving Day.
Have you experienced any significant challenges that have affected your ability to attend college?
Most of my challenges have revolved around my need for financial aid because of my parents’ deaths when I was younger and as a first-generation college student. I lacked financial support to pay for tuition, fees and school supplies. Being a first-generation student, I did not know about opportunities to receive financial aid. I also needed to support myself financially, which meant working a full-time job. There were many times I felt discouraged because I could not find the help and support I needed, but after many years I have realized I had to take some risks if I really wanted to finish college.
What does being a first-generation student mean to you and your family?
It means it will provide me with better opportunities, which also allows me to serve as a role model for my niece and nephews. Being the first to achieve this goal means I have finally attained something that seemed impossible at times and that means the world to me.
What has receiving the William M. Suttles Endowed Scholarship meant to you?
Receiving this scholarship gave me the courage to risk working less and earning less income so I could be a full-time student for the first time in my college career. Being a full-time student has resulted in many opportunities I would not have had otherwise. And now I feel like I am truly part of the Georgia State community and I can actually fully focus on my studies. And for the very first time, I actually know when I will graduate, which was something that always seemed so out of reach.
What words of gratitude would you like to express to the donors who make scholarships possible?
If only you knew how many years I have spent hoping that someday someone would believe in me enough to invest in me and my future. My life has completely changed over the last year and this scholarship was a very big part of that. I cannot stress enough how thankful I am for this scholarship.