Meet the 2021 Scholars

Get to know the hopes, dreams, and talents of this year's winners.

Leila B.

Undergraduate Recipient

"Living through a global pandemic with a chronic illness, what is one piece of inspirational advice that you would give to other students with CF who are in the same or similar position?"

The sunshine. It’s there, I know it is. I just can’t quite see it. It’s clouded by the things that make my life a little darker: hospital admissions, feelings of loneliness, boredom, and isolation, and the inability to see some of the people I care about. Being sick and bored always brings about lethargy and a lack of motivation to pursue anything I enjoy, because I feel too drained. These feelings I experience because of Cystic Fibrosis are no different than the ones I experience because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Being chronically ill, it’s always been important for me to dedicate time to the things that I need to do to get better. Slowly but surely, I can move the cloud over my sunshine. Everything seems to get brighter and brighter as I work my way back to health. Right now, with most all events taking place over the phone, it’s easy to fall into a pit of dread and disinterest in things you once enjoyed. But the pandemic will not last forever. This is the advice I would give to fellow students with CF: we’re fighters. We constantly push through tough times that, at one point, might have seemed impossible. This pandemic is no different. The sun will come out and shine its light on the opportunities that have been hiding in the shadows. Nothing can stop us from achieving our sunshine.

Leila B.'s Artwork

Leila B.'s Achievements

  • International Thespian Society Troupe 7346 Vice President (2019-2020), Historian (2018-2019), Troupe Mentor (2018-2020)
  • Miss Creekside Pageant Miss Congeniality Winner (2019-2020), Miss Creekside Most Talented Winner (2019-2020)
  • 11 Superior Awards in International Thespian Society Competitions, 3 Excellent Awards in International Thespian Society Competitions
  • Troupe 7346 Best Thespian, Best Actress, Best Vocal Performance, Most Likely to Be Famous (2019-2020)
  • BeaTPAC Children's Theatre Summer Camp Counselor (2017-2020)
  • University of Central Florida Advertising and PR Major Admit
  • University of Central Florida Deans List 2020-2021
  • Actress for UF Health Psychology Training Department
  • Dreams Come True Scholarship Winner 2020-2021
  • National Honor Society Member (2018-2020)