LAURINBURG – Out of more than 10,000 applicants, Doni Holloway, a junior at Scotland Early College High School, was among 100 students recently chosen for the Disney Dreamers Academy — a four-day, all-expenses paid, educational and mentoring program at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.
This is the seventh annual Disney Dreamers Academy, which partners with Steve Harvey and Essence Magazine.
During the fall semester, Holloway completed a lengthy application which required answering a multitude of questions and writing three short essays that included a brief biography of his life, who inspired him the most and what he would like to accomplish during his future career.
“Disney Dreamers isn’t just looking for someone who looks good on paper,” said Tracey Powell, executive champion for Disney Dreamer Academy. We also want someone that has a dream and is able to articulate it.”
Holloway said he only hoped that he would be one of the finalists, adding that those that have been accepted in the past have usually had to apply several times before receiving one of the much-coveted spots. When Holloway received his acceptance letter in the mail right before Christmas, he was “surprised and beyond excited” since this was only the first time he had applied.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Holloway said. “I immediately started calling everyone to share the good news.”
While at the academy in March during spring break, Holloway will have a week filled with exclusive exposure to some of the most influential people in the nation. He will be able to attend workshops related to his interests and spend one-on-one time with leaders in a variety of fields.
“My future plans include pursuing a career in broadcast journalism,” Holloway said, “so I am especially eager to meet and interview some of my role models who will be at the academy. This opportunity has empowered me to achieve my goals and feel even more connected to my future.”
Meredith Bounds works as the public information officer for Scotland County Schools.