Opportunity to Grow Scholarship Winners
2022 Winner: Brandon Nesbit
I am Brandon Nesbit, an incoming First-Year at the University of Virginia intending to pursue a B.S. in Commerce. I am a current senior at South Lakes High School in Virginia, where I am involved in various academic, business-related, and cultural organizations.
Since 2020, I have advocated for youth financial literacy as the Founder of IMENO, an educational initiative that accumulated 1.35 million views and 3,020 subscribers within two years before winning Incfile’s Young Entrepreneur Scholarship Grant.
In early 2023, IMENO was admitted into BizWorld’s Young Entrepreneur Success! Program, where we plan to expand financial education through a startup accelerator.
At Junior Achievement, I lead as Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Finance of student-run companies. Heading finance and accounting at our company—a former JA national finalist—we grossed over $5,500 in revenue and donated over $2,170 to several charities.
In addition to Junior Achievement, I serve as an officer and national competitor of South Lakes High’s Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) chapter. In the 2022 Securities & Investments event, I attained second place at the National Leadership Conference (NLC) in Chicago.
Beyond business, I have been immersed in martial arts since age five. In particular, I am an avid Taichi enthusiast and athlete. Whether it’s competing in competitions or practicing for the benefits of meditation, I hope to continue Taichi in the future!
In college, I can’t wait to explore academic pathways with the incredible support of the Opportunity to Grow Scholarship!
Reaction Statement: “I am grateful and honored to be selected for the 2022 Opportunity to Grow Scholarship. I deeply admire the Williams Law Group for providing funding to empower students! By reducing the cost burden of college, this scholarship will enable me to explore academic opportunities and promote financial literacy through IMENO throughout the future. Thank you for the incredible opportunity!”
2021 Winner: Aditi Sengupta
Aditi Sengupta is a senior at Ardrey Kell High School in Charlotte, NC. In the spring of 2020, when the world was locked down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, she observed that it severely impacted the education of children, especially elementary school students. Along with her younger brother, Aditi formed Xcelerate NC, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with the mission to accelerate the growth of young minds and help them excel.
Through Xcelerate NC, Aditi has had the privilege to work with children around the world. She has conducted public speaking workshops and camps in the USA, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, and India. She also teaches weekly sessions in the USA to raise funds for causes close to her heart, such as breast cancer awareness and access to education. Aditi believes that public speaking builds up confidence, improves communication skills, and helps in overall personal development. She is dedicated to supporting students in discovering their unique voices.
Outside of teaching, Aditi enjoys singing and playing the guitar. She is trained in many western styles and loves exploring Indo-Western fusion. She holds a Second-Degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon-Do. Aditi has also been a debater for six years and currently leads her school’s Mock Trial and Debate teams.
As she pursues her higher education, Aditi wants to utilize her public speaking background to advocate for others. Her experience with Xcelerate NC has shown her the importance of education. As an aspiring attorney, she hopes to reduce barriers to education for students around the world who lack access to technology and infrastructure.
2020 Winner: Lindsay Wheeler
Lindsay Wheeler is a senior at Palo Verde High School in Las Vegas, NV. Early on she understood the importance of volunteering and giving back to others. Her experience in the community as a member of National Charity League allowed her to identify an unmet need which led to her founding Project Dot, a non-profit that supplies feminine hygiene items to help homeless and low-income women and girls in Southern Nevada.
For years she struggled in school and couldn’t explain why. The summer before her Junior year in high school she was diagnosed with a form of dyslexia. Her success with Project Dot gave her the confidence and perseverance to push through and focus on her educational therapy to gain the skills she needed to succeed.
In her spare time (and prior to the pandemic), Lindsay enjoys playing club volleyball, playing guitar, shopping for vintage vinyl records and traveling. She is president of her school’s National Arts Honor Society and has received awards in local art competitions through her work in the International Baccalaureate art program.
Lindsay plans to pursue a career in psychology to help children with special needs, like her, to make sure they have the resources and programs to succeed.
She has learned that she has a powerful voice and is looking forward to going off to college and building her network to change the world!
Reaction Statement: “I am honored to have been selected for this scholarship. I am passionate about our community and it’s humbling to be recognized for the work that I do. This award shows that I can be an inspiration to others even thought I am just a teen. My work won’t stop when I go off to college as I hope to continue to help others for many years to come.”