Fourth-year medical laboratory science student Mary Glossop has won nearly $57,000 in scholarships
The COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S. during the tail end of Mary Glossop’s freshman year at the University of Cincinnati. A medical laboratory science student at UC’s College of Allied Health Sciences, Glossop was bummed when she and all the other students living on campus were forced to move home during the final months of her second semester. That summer, when it felt like the whole world had shut down and everyone was quarantined at home, Glossop decided she wanted to do something productive.
“I came across a few YouTube videos of people who help students win scholarships. I ended up enrolling in a program called The Scholarship Algorithm, and through that I’ve been able to win 20 scholarships so far,” says Glossop, who is now in her fourth year at UC and plans on graduating this summer. “It has been very, very rigorous work. I’ve probably applied to over 200 scholarships since 2020.”
I’ve probably applied to over 200 scholarships since 2020.
Mary Glossop Medical laboratory science student
Applying for scholarships is like a part-time job for Glossop. She even keeps a spreadsheet featuring upcoming scholarship deadlines so she can carve out time to write essays in between her demanding academic schedule and extracurricular activities.
Beth Warning, MS, MLS(ASCP)cm, AHI (AMT), an associate professor and the campus-based program director for the medical laboratory science program at UC, has worked closely with Glossop throughout her undergraduate career and serves as a reference on her scholarship applications.
“I am really not sure how many recommendations I have written, but it is very easy to be supportive considering that Mary is an outstanding student,” Warning says. “Not only does she excel academically, but she also promotes student success as a peer leader and is an active volunteer member of a number of university-based clubs and organizations. I am very impressed with her dedication to find scholarship opportunities and then take the time to write the various essays and fill out the endless forms, and I am excited when she shares the news so I can celebrate her accomplishments.”
Her past fuels her search
Glossop’s hard work and dedication have certainly paid off. As of October, she had won $56,750 in scholarships, including nine national awards. Glossop says The Scholarship Algorithm has been life-changing in enabling her to pay for her education through strengthening her understanding of the application process and improving her essay-writing abilities. Ironically, the personal story she often shares in her essays is also what motivates her to study medical laboratory science.
“About six years ago I was diagnosed with food sensitivities [to gluten and dairy], so after graduation I want to go into rare disease advocacy and more specifically immunological research,” she says. “I felt a lot of anxiety when I was first diagnosed because you basically have to change your whole lifestyle and diet, and I also struggled with some debilitating gastrointestinal issues and migraines.”
In 2018, during her senior year at Loveland High School and two years into navigating her diagnosis, Glossop enrolled in her first laboratory course at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College. That’s when she discovered that “lab work is actually really fun” and she could research rare diseases like hers through medical laboratory science.
Now Glossop says she uses her scholarship applications to increase awareness of the importance of the medical laboratory science field. In July, she won a $10,000 scholarship from Salix Pharmaceuticals thanks to an essay she wrote highlighting how her gastrointestinal condition has impacted her educational journey and the role her healthcare providers play in helping her succeed.
“Throughout this journey, I was blessed to have the assistance of my medical team—gastroenterologists, allergists, and numerous other physicians. Nearly six years later, after many costly medications, three rounds of surgeries, and adjustments to my lifestyle, I have achieved almost full recovery from my symptoms,” Glossop shared in her essay. “Aside from the physical care component of my progress, my healthcare providers have acted as coaches to me—uplifting me when my conditions became overwhelming, making me feel comfortable and not simply a list of problems, and guiding me through bumps in the road that still happen today.”
Now she’s paying it forward
Though her eligibility is lower now that she’s in her fourth year, she continues to apply for scholarships and is paying it forward by supporting other students in their scholarship search. She shared one of her winning essays with Carlynn Greene, creator of The Scholarship Algorithm, to use as an example in her program. Since July, Glossop has also partnered with another company that helps students win scholarships called Impellingo, creating educational graphics about the scholarship process for the company’s social media platforms. And in October, as president of UC’s National Society of Leadership and Success chapter, Glossop organized an on-campus/virtual seminar on navigating the scholarship application process in partnership with Impellingo’s founder and CEO Gisellia Mouele Makita.
After graduation, Glossop plans to gain experience working in a hospital before pursuing immunology research. She says she’d also love to continue advocating for students seeking financial support because her scholarship journey has not only set her up to graduate debt-free, but it has also taught her valuable life lessons.
“It has been incredible,” she says. “It’s taught me to stay determined and that even though you are always going to face rejection, there are so many opportunities to improve and succeed.”