Welcome to Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars! We are so glad you took the initiative to apply to our program to be a Next Level Scholar. We know that the pandemic and changes in school learning this year have been incredibly challenging for many students and their families. Please know that we are here for you and want to help you succeed both now and in the future!

This will be the first of many newsletters you will receive from us. Each newsletter is typically filled with resources, updates about our program, and more. We hope you find them helpful and welcome you to reach out if you have questions or suggestions on content.

We hope that you and your families are continuing to stay safe and healthy. Happy Holidays!
Marissa D'Angelo
Next Level Scholars Program Manager
Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars
(734) 983-8505
  • WELCOME: Meet the DRDFS Team!
  • NEW: Defining "Reach, Match, Safety" While Building Your College List
  • Resource Spotlight: How to Start Planning for College in 10th Grade
  • Featured Resources
Welcome to Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars! All of us at DFS are excited to get to know you and support you on your path to getting to the next level—post-secondary education. We each shared a fun fact about ourselves and coincidentally, we all mentioned traveling! Our question to you is, If you could travel anywhere right now, where would you go? Reply to this email to let us know!

Meet the DRDFS team:

Marketea Abbott, Post-Secondary Transition Coach
  • Marketea is an alumni of DRDFS! She is currently working closely with the Class of 2021 as they prepare to close out their senior year and head to post-secondary.
  • Fun fact about Marketea: "I love traveling! One spring I traveled to New Orleans to volunteer at the New Orleans Mission and while there I found my favorite ice-cream place in the U.S. (I LOVE ice-cream). If you go you have to try it, Creole Creamery!" 

Marissa D'Angelo, Next Level Scholars Program Manager
  • Marissa works closely with Jill to plan student programming (including this newsletter).
  • Fun Fact about Marissa: "As a senior in high school I traveled to rural Mexico with my close friend and her family. We stayed with her Grandmother and helped tutor her young cousins. It was an awesome experience and the food was amazing!"

Christa Funk, Executive Director
  • It's Christa's job to make sure at a high level that Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars is sustainable and keeps moving forward so we can continue to work with students across the region just like you for years to come!
  • Fun Fact about Christa: "I've snorkeled between the tectonic plates of North America and Europe in Iceland!"

Jill Marecki, Next Level Scholars Program Director
  • Jill works closely with Marissa to plan programming for you throughout high school. She also works with your DFS high school adviser and principal to make our program happen!
  • Fun Fact about Jill: "When I was a sophomore in high school, I went on a student exchange trip to Costa Rica. My favorite part was living with my large host family (7 children, 2 parents and 2 grandparents) and learning to cook with them, especially tamales!"

Lindsey Pavlov, Communications and Development Manager
  • Lindsey shares our stories and builds relationships with our supporters to raise funds for our program and scholarships. She also helps you and your school fundraise for DRDFS. Each school has a goal to raise $4,000 each year - you'll hear more from her on that this spring!
  • Fun Fact about Lindsey: "Went on a hunt for George Washington's secret crypt underneath the US Capitol building, and found it. And yes, it's creepy! :)"

Grace Verhines, Executive Assistant
  • Grace's job is to keep documents and finances organized, and to help staff with financial responsibilities. She also helps Christa and staff when they need an extra set of hands or eyes.
  • Fun Fact about Grace: "I helped survey and plan a small village in the jungle in West Africa when I was 17. I also helped bring supplies to children in a leper colony while I was there."

Erin Vogel, Awards and Alumni Manager
  • Erin works with the entire Dollars for Scholars Alumni network, providing support and resources in life after high school, and your scholarship is disbursed through her!
  • Fun Fact about Erin: "I have been bungee jumping at Victoria Falls in Africa."
It's never too early to begin drafting your college list. Maybe you've already started or maybe you're unsure of where to begin. Either way, DFS is here to help you with this! Use this document, created by DCAN (Detroit College Access Network) to help you get started.

A college list is a list of colleges and universities that could be a good fit for you. The list can include schools close to home or in other cities and states. Consider colleges that match your interests, goals, and what’s important to you! You can use average GPA and test scores, potential majors, and other factors to help you narrow it down. It is also helpful to start defining those schools on your list by "Reach, Match, and Safety" schools:

  • Match Schools: A match school is one in which your transcript mirrors that of the average freshman. Therefore, your GPA, SAT/ACT scores and coursework (college prep, honors, etc.) are all on par with those undergrads typically admitted. Add at least 3 to your list.

  • Reach Schools: Reach schools are colleges where your academic qualifications are below the average accepted student. You still have a chance of getting accepting -- add at least 1-3 to your post-secondary list.

  • Safety Schools: A safety school is one in which your academic credentials exceed those of the average accepted student. Consequently, there is a high probability that you will be admitted. Include 1-3 on your list.
Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars is here to inspire and prepare you to succeed in life after high school. Each year, we have a few checkpoints for students to make sure we are supporting you no matter the circumstances.

The following survey will help us get to know you better so we can make sure we are providing the right support based on your individual needs and goals.

Please complete this required survey no later than January 4.
As you settle into your sophomore year, consider taking on new challenges to prep for college—this is a great time to do it!

  • Check out this blog post put together by College Board to help you think about some things you can do this school year to prep for your future!

  • This College Board checklist may also help you navigate the steps you can be taking now to begin the college planning process. 
  • Check out this calendar for student webinar opportunities.

  • If you or your family are in need of any resources, please reach out to us at any time or explore this list of COVID-19 Resources