The prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship can be a passport to a bright future. Every year, 1,000 outstanding students receive these good-through-graduation scholarships that can be used at the college or university of their choice.

This year, 18-year-old Dakota Marin is the Hostos-Lincoln Academy of Science’s (HLA) Gates Millennium Scholar. A Bronx native who will graduate from HLA at the end of June and will receive an Associate Degree in Liberal Arts from Hostos Community College in September, Dakota said at first he could not believe he had been chosen. But now, he eagerly looks forward to using this award to fast-track his studies at New York University’s Polytechnic School of Engineering, beginning in July.

“I couldn’t have won this scholarship if it wasn’t for my mentor, Marisa VanBrakle, who also graduated from HLA and received a Gates Millennium Scholarship,” Dakota said. “Hostos-Lincoln Academy really challenged me, and it also enhanced my knowledge base. I would definitely recommend it to college-bound students.”

Dakota began his academic journey at HLA in the 6th grade. While he always excelled in mathematics, he was unsure of what he wanted for a career until he reached the 10th grade. It was then that he realized that he wanted to be a mechanical engineer.

“I really like cars, especially race cars. I want to design them after college. At NYU, I want to apply to the accelerated bachelor's-master's program so I can earn my master’s degree quickly.”

Thanks to the firm foundation provided by HLA’s academic program and the windfall of a Gates Millennium Scholarship, the Ferrari-loving Dakota, who also enjoys wrestling, bodybuilding and basketball, is now on the fast track to the career of his dreams.

About Hostos-Lincoln Academy of Science
The Hostos-Lincoln Academy (HLA) is an early college secondary school, from grades 6th through 12th, that operates as a college prep and partners with Hostos Community College. HLA is an educational collaborative between the New York City Department of Education and The City University of New York. The vision of the academy is that students will graduate with a Regents Diploma granted by the New York City Department of Education and an Associate Degree from Hostos Community College.

About the Gates Millennium Scholars Program
The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program selects 1,000 talented students each year to receive a good-through-graduation scholarship to use at any college or university of their choice.

The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program announced the entire list of students selected for the GMS Class of 2014 in a press release. View the complete listing of the GMS Class of 2014 by School's State.

About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change that has been transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. It serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, as well as a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique "Student Success Coaching Unit" provides students with individualized guidance and exemplifies its emphasis on student support services.

Hostos offers 29 associate degree programs and five certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to CUNY's four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of The City University of New York (CUNY), the nation's leading urban public university, which serves more than 480,000 students at 24 colleges.