Meet the Finalist: Daniel Kinzer

With more than 2,500 submitted applications received for the 2016 Richie's Spirit Foundation Significant Challenge College Scholarship Program, our team of 40 volunteer judges have narrow the pool to the top 5 candidates.  The top three candidates will receive from between $500 and $2,000 in scholarships.

Here is a closer look at one of the final candidates.

Daniel Kinzer

Daniel, a 17 year old from Rogers, Arkansas, received a liver transplant in his early teens and soon after experienced serious complications.  He has missed hundreds of days of school battling infection, visiting doctors, and recovering from the life changing experience.  Yet Daniel remains a high honors student and continues to keep a positive attitude.

"At the time I received my transplant, there was another young boy going through the same situation," Daniel recalled.  "He fought so hard, but did not survive.  It really put things into perspective for me and from that moment on I promised myself I would never take the easy way out."

Due to his absence from school, teachers and administrators advised Daniel to consider repeating his grade level to ensure he was able to catch up with the rigorous course load.  Instead, Daniel did the opposite.  He committed himself to his school work and challenged his abilities by taking on additional AP classes and extra curricular activities.  In the end, it has paid off for Daniel as he has received acceptance into several major universities including Baylor University and The University of Tulsa.

We wish Daniel luck in the final round of review and encourage you to check back soon for the announcement of our scholarship recipients.