North Texas

Greenville Student Wins $150K in Scholarships, Launches Site to Teach Others

There's a scholarship for almost anything: from playing video games and drawing birds to making your prom dress out of duct tape

She's earned her bachelor's, master's and she’s months away from a Ph.D.

To us, Gabrielle McCormick has got it going on. But to her -- "I'd say I'm a nerd at heart."

McCormick is a stellar student with a lot of wisdom. But there's one thing this North Texan won’t have when she graduates:  College debt.

"Debt free! Completely debt free. Never seen a student loan application at all," McCormick said.

Here in North Texas, McCormick is best known for her time on the court at Greenville High School, a basketball star who knew her skills would one day score her an athletic scholarship.

But life had other plans.

"I tore my Achilles completely," she said. "When I told the coaches that were recruiting me that I'd torn my Achilles they said, 'Oh, I hate to hear that. Best of luck on your surgery,' and I never heard from them again."

That's when panic mode set in.

"I was desperate and my parents were desperate too. I had lost my identity as a student athlete.  A large part of my life had been taken away from me," McCormick said.

But McCormick wasn't giving up.

She started reading books and searching the Internet, determined to apply for as many scholarships as she could. What she learned, shocked her.

"You can get a scholarship for contacts, for glasses or being over 5 feet 10 inches as a female."

There's a scholarship for almost anything: from playing video games and drawing birds to making your prom dress out of duct tape.

She won money for good sportsmanship from the Commerce Basketball Officials Organization. She even won an academic scholarship from her high school’s cafeteria food vendor.

After winning more than a $150,000 in college funding, she knew she was on to something. 

"This isn't luck. You've actually figured out how to do this," she thought.

McCormick is now working on her third degree while running her own company: Scholarship Informer.

She’s teaching parents and students how to avoid loans and debt.

"I do what I do because it could’ve easily been me saddled with outrageous student debt," said McCormick. "I never wanted to place my parents in a situation where they were sacrificing their retirement to pay for my education."

Scholarship Informer was designed to help people from start to finish with the scholarship process, regardless of income level.

McCormick says her website offers numerous free resources, a scholarship calculator to help families estimate how much money a student could win, and most importantly real people helping real people.

"It’s my goal to make college affordable for everyone that wishes to attend," said McCormick.

From a former athlete to a scholarship connoisseur, she said not only is the money is there, it's everywhere. And she's here to help North Texans find it.

Online: Scholarship Informer

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