De Anza College Mellon Scholar program shaped student’s character, friendships


Ella Shih

Manreet Dhariwal, 19, sociology major, is continuing her second term of the 1500 Stories internship with Jennifer Myhre, sociology professor.

Ella Shih, Staff Reporter

Manreet Dhariwal, 19, sociology major, said the Mellon Scholar program helped her realize she “can do everything.”

Dhariwal said she became interested in the Mellon Scholar program because she saw a paid internship opportunity in the program listed in the mail by her sociology professor.

Dhariwal said her biggest motivation was to meet new people and make connections with other students and the faculty and staff of the program.

Dhariwal said she was a great connection with the advisor to the Mellon Scholar program, Jill Quigley.

“I feel Jill is my best friend,” she said. “(Someone who) you always have in your life but you don’t really necessary talk to them every day.”

“It’s hard to create connections with people, especially in community college,” Dhariwal said.

Dhariwal said “freedom” sets Mellon Scholars apart from other students.

“It really gives me the freedom to be who I am,” said Dhariwal. “I have really owned that personality now.”

Dhariwal is now continuing her second term of the 1500 stories internship with sociology professor Jennifer Myhre.

“It’s a lot of fun work,” said Dhariwal. “If you want to do something, and you explain to them, they will let you do it.”

She plans to earn her humanities certificate by finishing the course this summer and then continue her undergraduate study with emphasis on business and communication at Santa Clara University.

“It’s very touching (to receive the certificate). You just have that awareness of stability. Knowing that you are able to stay consistent,” said Dhariwal.

She envisions creating a non-profit organization to provide education to every one and also write a book in the future.

Dhariwal hopes to keep in touch with her professors after graduating. She said she has expanded her network through consistent participation.