Fairfield Prep student named Gates Millennium Scholar


Fairfield Prep student Mark Giannini has been named a Gates Millenium Scholar. He is shown here with the Rev. John Hanwell, president; Dr. Robert Perrotta, principal,; John Hanrahan, dean of guidance and college advising; and Jon DeRosa, director of student activities and Christian service.

For his leadership, community service and academic achievement, Mark H. Giannini, Fairfield Prep senior, has been chosen as a Gates Millennium Scholar.

The Gates Millennium Scholars Program is the nation’s largest minority scholarship program and is funded by a $1.6 billion grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

From the largest and most competitive group of candidates in the program’s history, Mark was one of 1,000 chosen from a nationwide pool of 54,000 applicants. GMS scholarships are awarded to undergraduate students of diversity across the country who demonstrate academic excellence and strong leadership skills. Scholarships assist students in meeting the cost of attendance at the college or university of their choice. GMS scholars who choose to pursue graduate studies in the areas of computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health and science are eligible to receive continued funding.

The program also provides leadership development opportunities to ensure that scholars graduate prepared to become strong leaders in their professions and in their communities. Mark plans to attend the University of Notre Dame and pursue studies in applied mathematics and chemistry.

Mark has explored his talents and interests through academics, service, campus ministry and involvement in a number of clubs and organizations. He has participated in Fairfield Prep’s Kairos retreat program, Campus Ministry Student Board, Debate Society and Political Awareness Club. Mark has embraced diversity at Prep by his involvement in the SEED program (Students for Educational Excellence through Diversity).

Academically, he maintains a 3.8 grade point average while taking the strongest available course of studies offered. He has also shared his academic success through involvement in the Peer Tutor program and has helped support the school community by his commitment to the Cardinal Key Society.

His involvement in service goes beyond the Fairfield Prep campus as Mark has both experienced “Urban Plunge” and served as a leader of the urban immersion service program. Mark traveled to Tierra Blanca, El Salvador, to participate in Prep’s service mission there.

Mark is the son of Mark and Valerie Giannini of Monroe.

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