Andrew Fick and Finding the Right Campus

By Mike Zlonkevicz


Stats and graphs can easily show the impact of a college education. However, some things are difficult to communicate through pamphlets, presentations, and websites. Through Dollars for Scholars, high school students are exposed to a variety of college campuses to help them understand college beyond the numbers.


But first, let's talk about some numbers. In 2017, 100% of the 71 high school seniors in Dollars for Scholars were accepted to college, and DFS awarded them $268,000 upon graduation to help make their college decision easier.


This most recent class of Dollars for Scholars alumni adds to the growing network of young leaders now over 600 strong. Since Dollars for Scholars founding in 1990, many alumni are years removed from college, putting their education to use. More recent DFS graduates have been in college for a few years and can reflect back and provide insight on the experiences that helped them choose the proper academic environment.


One such alum is Andrew Fick, a 2015 graduate from Henry Ford II High School. He is student at Saginaw Valley State University, and finds much value in the campus tours DFS provides. "I chose Saginaw Valley State University for many reasons. One reason is the campus. From the first tour knew I was going to enjoy it here."


These tours can help DFS students better understand campus life by exposing them to the perspectives of college students and their experience following high school. For Mr. Fick, he advises students to be flexible and resilient. He originally intended to study occupational therapy, but has switched majors to exercise science, which taught him important lessons for navigating college. "Things change; life throws you curveballs and you have to be prepared to handle them. I had to change my major and I never thought I was going to have to but you have to stay resilient and be flexible enough to find something else you'll love. . . . So my future has recently changed but I am excited to start something new."


Campus tours are also important to understand all that colleges offer, as Mr. Fick has discovered while at Saginaw Valley State: "Also the academics and resources here are amazing. They have state of the art labs that other schools don't have or that are not available to undergraduate students. It's a great campus and the staff here is amazing. . . . . there are so many opportunities for students to be involved."

Mr. Fick is a model example of DFS alumni making the most of their post-secondary experience. After earning a degree in exercise science, "I see myself working in a rehabilitation facility in a hospital working with patients to get them back into shape after being hospitalized so that they are strong enough to return home."


He is also a member of the growing Dollars for Scholars alumni network willing to support other recent high school graduates with advice on choosing and navigating college.


To reach out to the DFS Alumni Council or to become a member, contact Erin Vogel at or 734-354-7606.