Senior Zeinab Zreik receives a full-ride scholarship to Stanford


Nahed Zreik

DHS Senior Zeinab Zreik holds her QuestBridge match board for Stanford. It is a QuestBridge tradition to make and take a picture with the college that you matched to. Zreik also has a matching hoodie showing her future school pride.

On Nov. 30, 2021, DHS senior Zeinab Zreik was offered a full-ride scholarship to Stanford University. Stanford is a private university located in Stanford, California. The college has a five percent acceptance rate and is known for its engineering programs.

With this in mind, Stanford was not originally Zreik’s first choice for higher education.

“Stanford was actually my second choice! I ranked Columbia University at the top of my college list mainly because I adored the location. That was pretty much it. In retrospect, I realize that Stanford was definitely a better fit for me, so I’m really glad it worked out,” Zreik said.

Zreik said her initial plan is to major in Human Biology while pursuing a pre-med route.

“My main goal for the future is to find the cure for cancer. As my acceptance has taught me, nothing is ever impossible, and I’ll forever carry that mindset wherever I go,” Zreik said.

In order to even be able to have the opportunity to attend such a prestigious school like Stanford, Zreiks said she first had to go through a unique application process. She used the platform QuestBridge National College Match. This program helps low-income students with high achievement connect to the colleges they want to attend.

“My college application process was very different. I applied to Stanford early through the competitive QuestBridge National College Match. When I was selected as a finalist back in October. I had the opportunity to rank certain colleges that are partnered with the QuestBridge program, and if you get matched, you win early admission and a full-ride scholarship,” Zreik said.

Zreik said she attributes her acceptance to the various after-school activities she has been involved in throughout her school career. Zreik was highly involved in many programs in the community and at DHS in the areas of science and social justice.

“As an Executive Committee member of the Teen Grant-making Initiative, a program of the Center for Arab American Philanthropy, I collaborate with a brilliant group of fellow Arab-American philanthropists to alleviate communal issues impacting youth. I also participated in a summer health science immersion program, an American Cancer Society program, our beloved Debate Team as Captain, and the DCMST Student Council as Treasurer,” Zreik said.

After receiving Zeinab’s perspective insight was provided on how her family felt about her success.

Nahed Zreik, Zeinab’s mother, said she is proud of her daughter’s accomplishments.

“She is truly one of the hardest working young women. I believe she’s extremely intelligent and showed signs of her intelligence as a child. Whenever I lose something (most of the time it was my keys) I’d always ask her where I had placed them… Every time without fail she’d know where they are. ‘My lil clairvoyant’ I would say!’” Nahed said.

Lastly, Zahraa Zreik, younger sister of Zeinab Zreik, and Junior at DHS who also hopes to go to Stanford gave insight into how she felt about her sister going to a prestigious school.

“I can’t wait for her to go because I’m happy for her. Getting into big schools like Stanford had always been a dream of hers and she’d been working hard to achieve that,” Zahraa said.

Altogether, Nahed Zreik shared her point of view as a mother seeing her child move across the country.

“Although I wished that my kids would always be close to home, I had to put my feelings aside for the benefit of her future. And I will always support her!” Nahed said.