The following is a company-submitted press release and does not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Spaces4Learning.

2016 Math and Science Scholars Named in Urban Schools

Council of the Great City Schools Awards ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Scholarships

Washington, D.C. (Business Wire) — Four graduating high school seniors have been selected by the Great City Schools (CGCS) to receive the 2016 ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Math and Science Scholarship. They were chosen from several hundred applicants across the nation for their academic performance, leadership qualities and community involvement.

Now in its seventh year, the scholarship was created by former NASA astronaut Dr. Bernard Harris, Jr., the first African American to walk in space, and ExxonMobil to encourage and assist promising students of diverse backgrounds who plan to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) studies after high school.
The awards are given annually to African-American and Hispanic seniors from high schools in the 70 urban school districts represented by CGCS.

“These highly competitive scholarships give talented urban students a boost in their pursuit of postsecondary STEM studies and careers,” said Michael Casserly, executive director, Council of the Great City Schools. “The generous support of Dr. Harris and ExxonMobil helps advance these young men and women as they begin the next stage of their lives.”

Each scholar will receive $5,000 for continued education in a STEM-related field. This year’s award winners are:

  • Michael Benben, Western High School, Broward County (FL) Public Schools
  • Francesca Rafaella Dupuy, Cooper City High School, Broward County (FL) Public Schools
  • Eillen Daniela Martinez, Timber Creek High School, Orange County (FL) Public Schools
  • Dalan Omar Smallwood, Strawberry Crest High School, Hillsborough County (FL) School District.

In the fall, Benben plans to attend the Georgia Institute of Technology and aspires to major in mechanical engineering. Dupuy will be studying environmental engineering at the University of Florida. Martinez hopes to become a doctor and will attend Johns Hopkins University, while Smallwood, who will study biophysics and also has aspirations to be a physician, will attend the University of North Carolina.

“Reading the achievements and aspirations of these young people is truly inspirational,” said Dr. Harris. “It’s my hope that the scholarships they receive will propel them to a future of fulfilling their dreams.”

Administration of the scholarship program, including the application process, pre-selection and presentation of awards, is provided by the CGCS. Dr. Harris makes the final selection of recipients. For more information, visit

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