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Doyon Foundation Student Profile: Sigourney Walker
Sigourney Walker
Doyon Foundation student Sigourney Walker is one of 1,000 students
from across the country to be selected for the prestigious
Gates Millennium Scholars award for 2008 – 2009.

Doyon Foundation student Sigourney Walker recently became one of 1,000 students from across the entire country to be selected for the 2008 – 2009 Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) award, a prestigious award given to outstanding, low-income, minority students.


The GMS program is much more than just a scholarship – the program offers funding for undergraduate degrees in any discipline; renewable awards for maintaining satisfactory academic progress; graduate school funding in the areas of education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health and sciences; and leadership development programs.


“Essentially, being a Gates Scholar means you are funded through your bachelor’s degree and even graduate school. It is an amazing opportunity to continue my education without facing significant financial barriers,” said Walker, who is the daughter of Hugh and Susan Walker of Fairbanks , and the granddaughter of Irene and the late James Walker from Holy Cross, and Betty and Mike Meyers from RenoNev.


Walker, a 2007 graduate of West Valley High School , is currently attending the University of Alaska Fairbanks , where she is pursuing a degree in biochemistry. After graduating in 2011, Walker said she hopes to go on to medical or graduate school.


“I’d love to work in a hospital one day. There are many wonderful opportunities and many professions to choose from in that arena,” she said.


In addition to her studies, Walker also plays the harp, participates in the UAF Leadership Program, and is part of a student-led TV production called “Diversity Matters,” which airs every Saturday at 2:30 p.m. on Channel 7 in Fairbanks . During high school, Walker participated in band and gymnastics and took AP classes – experiences that helped her through the GMS award’s extensive application process, which called for numerous essays and letters of recommendation.


“Take your time,” Walker advised other students interested in applying for GMS. “Filling out the form online is nice because you can save it and return periodically to add and edit. For your letters, find people who are well-acquainted with your skills and abilities. Most of all, let your application reflect yourself and how proud you are of your accomplishments!”


In addition to the GMS award, Walker is also a Doyon Foundation 2007 – 2008 competitive scholarship recipient.


The Foundation encourages students and helps them achieve their academic and vocational dreams. I think it is very important for Alaska Native students to have a bridge to join their cultural roots and educational goals together,” she said. “Knowing that the corporation believes in me and supports my education goals feels great!”


For more information on the Gates Millennium Scholars award, including application information for 2009 – 2010, visit www.gmsp.org.