Seniors Awarded Prestigious QuestBridge Scholarship

Photo courtesy of

Two West Haven High School seniors, Aayah Osman and Renad Osman, have been chosen for scholarships through the prestigious QuestBridge Scholars Network.

The QuestBridge National College Match connects high achieving, low-income high school seniors to full four-year scholarships to some of the nation’s best colleges. Aayah and Renad were two of over 17,900 applicants. They then became two of the 1,755 Finalists, which is the highest number of Match Scholarship Recipients QuestBridge has ever had thus far.

Through their hard work and determination to see the long and grueling process through, Aayah was awarded a four-year full scholarship to Wellesley College and Renad was awarded a four-year full scholarship to Princeton University. Aayah plans to major in computer science and Renad will be studying either civil engineering or architecture.

Renad said that the release from financial burden was very freeing for her, and she believes this will help her academically.

“This scholarship allows me to start college without worrying about finances,” she said. “Knowing that I do not have to worry about future debt is very tranquilizing, and will allow me to focus more diligently on my education.”

Aayah agreed, but she believes that this opportunity will help her in a more personal sense.

“One of my biggest worries, when it came to going to college, was the money,” she said. “Fortunately, I now have the opportunity to attend my absolute dream school without worrying about the loans I would have to take out. This opportunity will allow me to focus more on my education and grow overall as a person.”

She went on to express the importance of being one of the first members of her family to attend college.

“My parents did not have this opportunity and this accomplishment is in no way just my accomplishment. It is ours,” Aayah said.

Looking back on the process, both students remember being inspired, in some way, by 2021 QuestBridge scholars Nabiha Khan and Aissatou Diallo.

“I decided to apply to Questbridge after hearing about the 2021 recipients of the Match Scholarship, Nabiha and Aissatou,” Aayah said. “That sparked my interest in the program and I decided to further research Questbridge on my own. I was drawn by the opportunity to attend a top school for absolutely free.”

Renad said she also drew inspiration from the previous scholars.

“[My cousin] was friends with Aissatou and Nabiha and told me about their match.” Renad said. “I knew it could possibly lead to a bigger future for me and decided to give it a try.”

Renad recalled that the application process was lengthy, but not difficult. 

“I would not say the process of applying for QuestBridge was hard, I would say it is very time-consuming, requires a lot of patience, and goes by relatively quickly,” she said.

Aayah said that the process was “strenuous but definitely worth it.”

Even though her hard work paid off in such a spectacular way, Renad remains humble.

“I am spending the rest of my senior year just like all other students,” she said. “Excited for prom and graduation, but a little sorrowful knowing I will be moving on from my high school life. Still here attempting to balance a social life, homework, and after-school activities.”

Aayah is also focused on the fun of senior year and making memories to last a lifetime.

“I am excited for the senior activities,” she said. “I am so excited to spend the last semester of my high school days with friends making memories we’ll look back on forever. The spring of your senior year of [high school] is one of the only times when you have no responsibilities. You are just making memories.”

At the end of the process, she couldn’t help showing gratitude to her support system.

“I truly could not have done this alone without all the support I had.” Aayah said. “I want to thank my family, my wonderful teachers (honorable mention: Ms. Amato), my sister, supportive friends, Questbridge, and my amazing counselor, Ms. Quagliani!”

Click here to see more information about QuestBridge.