MILFORD — Cole Garlick, a recent graduate of Milford High School, has some goals that are out of this world.
Mr. Garlick will be attending West Virginia University this fall, where he plans to pursue a degree in aerospace engineering, which he said checks off all his boxes — science, math, engineering and adventure.
He recently attained some assistance in his space pursuit as one of 25 high school seniors and college students out of 900 applicants to be honored with $2,000 scholarships from Dunkin’ in its 12th annual Philadelphia Regional Scholarship Program.
Ursuline Academy’s Grace Azevedo was the only other student from Delaware to win a Dunkin’ scholarship. The Bear resident will be attending the University of Delaware.
“I am extremely honored,” said Mr. Garlick. “I was actually very shocked that I won it, and I wasn’t really expecting anything out of it, especially since it’s a really big regional (scholarship).”
Perry Shah, local Dunkin’ franchisee and Philadelphia Regional Advertising Committee chairman, said the program helps high school seniors and college students in southeastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Kent and New Castle counties in Delaware pursue a part-time or full-time undergraduate degree at the institution of their choice.
“On behalf of my fellow Philadelphia franchisees, we are honored to award these 25 exceptional students with the 2021 Dunkin’ Philadelphia regional scholarships,” Mr. Shah said. “We are proud to continue the tradition to further students’ educational goals in our community, as well as celebrate a major milestone this year — providing over half a million dollars to our local students since the program’s inception in 2009.”
Mr. Garlick said he was grateful for the assistance and said it will certainly come in handy when he packs his bags for Morgantown in just a couple weeks.
“I enjoy learning about space and possibly exploring space, and just everything about space really interests me,” he said. “I’m especially very interested in the engineering side, making different items and stuff to be used in space and, hopefully, help us down here on Earth.”
Mr. Garlick, who has also been named an Eagle Scout — the highest achievement in the Boy Scouts of America — credited that organization with much of his success.
Since the inception of the Eagle Scout status in 1911, only 4% of Scouts have earned the rank, which follows a lengthy review process.
“That was probably one of my biggest accomplishments,” said Mr. Garlick, who was a member of Troop 186, out of Milford. “It’s extremely hard to get that award, and it took me years and years to get that, and just all of the leadership things that I learned from it and just all the life lessons — I wouldn’t trade that for anything.”
He said his Eagle Scout project was building a retaining wall at the DuPont Nature Center, near Slaughter Beach. During storms, the wall is designed to hold in the sand, so it doesn’t blow and cause damage to the building or parking lot.
He carried that kind of success through his years at Milford High, where he graduated fourth in his class. He enjoyed his time as a Buccaneer, as he was a member of the National Honor Society, the Math League, the LEO Club and the FFA. He was also awarded the FFA’s Greenhand Degree and Chapter Degree.
“I enjoy nature a lot, and I really enjoy math and science,” he said. “I used to play an instrument, but I don’t really play it that much anymore. I played alto saxophone. I was in the marching band.”
Now, Mr. Garlick has his eyes skyward as he prepares to move to WVU.
“I’m pretty excited about it,” he said, adding that he also received a scholarship for his SAT scores, plus a couple other local financial awards. “It’s going to be a really big change, you know, going from kind of small town to a big college, but I’m excited for it. It’s going to be something different.
“I really enjoy the feeling you get there. It’s a really big university, but it feels like kind of a small town because there’s multiple different campuses, and it just feels a lot smaller than it is, and that just kind of feels better to me.”