Candlelighters Continuing

Education Scholarship Program

In 1996, Candlelighters For Children With Cancer established the Candlelighters Continuing Education Scholarship Program. We recognize that families can amass overwhelming debt in medical bills after years of treatment, follow up appointments, and on-going medical issues caused by treatment. The journey doesn’t stop for families, and Candlelighters support doesn’t stop either. Financial assistance is awarded to high school seniors or current college students to support their pursuit of a higher education who have previously been or are currently diagnosed with cancer.

Congratulations to our 2019-20 Scholarship Award Winners!

Elli Brown

Grant Olsen

Kenya Rodriquez-Sanchez

Candlelighters awarded 3 scholarships worth $2,500 each to Candlelighters teens: Elli Brown, Grant Olsen and Kenya Rodriquez-Sanchez. This year’s scholarship selection process included a volunteer committee panel who reviewed and selected 3 recipients out of 10 applicants. Thank you to the volunteer committee members who spent 6-8 hours reviewing the applications and making such tough decisions: Cam Worsham, Sam Brier, Melissa Rose, Wendy Patton and Heather Miller. These volunteers have a diversity of backgrounds, including being parents of a child diagnosed with cancer and longtime volunteers including four professional scholarship reviewers.

Elli Brown is a graduating senior at Grants Pass High School who was diagnosed with Leukemia her senior year. Elli plans to attend Drexel University and study nursing. “My dream is to become a nurse because I want to help people like me get through their treatments and illnesses easier. The nurses I have been lucky to have, have been so supportive and comforting, and I want to pay that forward. They helped me see that life is an opportunity to help others, to lean and try new things, and to grow from the challenges we face.”

Grant Olsen is a graduating senior at Camas High School who was diagnosed with Leukemia in January 2008, and after years of treatment was declared cured in 2014. Grants plans to attend George Fox University to study mechanical engineering.  “I am happy I am able to realize my goal of studying engineering despite the various negative effect's cancer has had on me. After years of hard work, it seems as if it will finally pay off. I believe that fighting cancer has helped me learn how to persevere when things get tough. This fighting spirit will help me in my pursuit of a career in engineering and anything I choose to do in life.”

Kenya Rodriquez-Sanchez is a graduating senior at West Salem High School who was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2001. After receiving a bone marrow transplant from her sister in 2002, she was declared cancer free. Kenya will attend Western Oregon University to study psychology. “Cancer taught me the meaning of survival and since then I've learned how to live. My mentality is to see life as an everyday adventure.”