2017 Customized Girl Statement Maker Scholarship Winners

Another year has come and gone and that can only mean one thing – it’s time to announce the 2017 Customized Girl statement maker scholarship winners!

Customized Girl is  all about statement makers and celebrating those who have an important message to share with the world. Statements are what we love and that’s why our scholarship is centered on not only making them but helping spread their awareness. Customized Girl has offered a statement maker scholarship to help students accomplish their collegiate goals for the last five years. We have selected five influential candidates who would each receive $500 towards their education costs.

We are not only honored to announce these powerful young adults but also ecstatic to share their lives with all of you.  Customized Girl asked all winners three questions:


1.) Describe yourself in three words?

2.) What is your ideal career path?

3.) Why is this statement important to you?


We are beyond excited to announce our the 2017 Customized Girl statement maker scholarship winners!

Ora Damelin

Statement: Weird is the new wonderful

1.) Passionate. Imaginative. Talkative.


2.) I have always wanted to spend my life telling stories, and hope to tell those stories through the medium of film. My dream is one day write and direct my own movies, or work as a show-runner on a television series. I want to introduce the world to stories that might seem unusual or difficult to digest, but are fueled by raw real emotions that people can relate to. (Also, I want to make a movie with unicorns. And zombies. And possibly tap dancing. Just to clarify- these are all different movies. Unicorns and zombies would never go together.)


3.) I honestly believe that weird is the new wonderful. I know that it is often tempting to tone down the elements of our personalities, backgrounds, and interests that may be strange or difficult to understand. But I also know, that it is these things, our individual weirdness, that make us special. I am not content to just say that weird is the new normal; I believe that weird is the new wonderful.


Claire R. Walker

​Statement: ​Make each day your greatest adventure.

1.) Preserving, sympathetic, and enthusiastic.


2.) I am currently achieving a degree in nursing so I can soon become a Registered Nurse! I always knew I wanted a career where I could give back to my community and help those in need. However, it took some time to fully realize that nursing was the perfect job for me. I spent years exploring different careers in healthcare and social work until I had a medical emergency that required me to stay in the hospital. My nurse truly changed my life with her dedicated and scrupulous care and I realized I wanted to make the same impact on others as she did with me. 


3.) This statement is so important to me because I often struggle with going out of my comfort zone although every time I do, I never regret it. I’ve traveled on a student exchange program to China, I’ve gone zip lining (while overcoming my fear of heights), tried crazy foods, taken out-of-the box classes, joined a running team, and so on. While these things may not seem like grand adventures, making an effort to do adventurous activities from time to time have made me grown so much as a person. I’ve also learned that adventure exists everywhere, whether it’s something big or small, but life is so much more vibrant when you seek these opportunities. I make it a point to have a small adventure each day so I go to bed knowing I made the most of my time and have something to look forward to the next morning! 


Kristen Adaway

Statement: Every failure is a second chance at success

1.) Passionate, determined, strong-willed


2.) My ideal career path involves being a journalist and telling the stories of women of color like me so that they their voices are just as loud as the majority. In the political climate that we are in today, I feel it is necessary for the stories of marginalized groups in society to be told . One of my long-term professional goals is to create my own media outlet that has a sole purpose in narrating the lives of women across the globe who have faced hardships and to explain how they’ve overcome them or the challenges that have kept them from being able to overcome them. Similar to Humans of New York, my media outlet would include “everyday” people and use their raw stories to give a glimpse into their lives. However, in the meantime my “smaller” dream is to work for a major media company as a features writer covering social justice and culture. 


3.) This statement is important to me because like many others, I have had my share of failures and disappointments. However, the silver lining in failing is the journey to get back to success. I truly believe that failures should be viewed as a lesson on what not to do or what to do better next time. For some, this lesson could even mean a complete change in direction from what their original plan was. No matter how you view failure, one things remains true: you will have another chance to improve even if the only person who sees the improvement is you.

Rebecca Stephens 

Statement: Great things have never come from comfort zones

1.) Motivated, open-minded, and kind.


2.) My ideal career is to be a doctor. Ever since I was a little girl, I have dreamed of becoming a doctor. I would watch all the television programs on the Discovery Health channel and imagine what it would be like to catch a subtle sign or symptom and make a lifesaving diagnosis like the doctors did on TV. This dream turned into a goal when I was twelve; I became very sick and needed a doctor’s help. My doctor saved my life by quickly diagnosing my illness and providing immediate treatment. I want to make a difference in people’s lives, like my doctor made a difference in mine. I was very young when I was sick, and I was very scared. But having a calm, educated person like my doctor take care of me was more comfort to me than he’ll ever know. I want to be that doctor for other children, and I hope to inspire them like my doctor inspired me.



3.) This statement has been my mantra for some years now. I sometimes struggle to put myself out there and try new things that are outside of my comfort zone. But when I hesitate to try something, I just remind myself of that mantra and do it. Yes, sometimes it doesn’t turn out the way I hoped; however, there is always a lesson to be learned from that. But most of the time, it goes well and great things happen!


Megan Stoddard

Statement: Never let the things you want, make you forget the things you have

1.) Loyal, organized, and logical.


2.)My ideal career path would be nursing because I love to help people!


3.) This statement is important to me because it’s a great reminder to be grateful. It is easy to lose sight of what you have when you are so focused on everything you may want at that moment in time. Nothing lasts forever! Live life one day at a time and enjoy the moment.


We are inspired by all these wonderful statement and hope they will inspire more young adults to be statement makers. Thanks again to everyone who entered our scholarship contest! Continue to rock out your statements and share some of them below in the comments!

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2016 Customized Girl Statement Maker Scholarship Winners

Many know Customized Girl as a print on demand apparel and accessory company that specializes in trendy designs. While we may have started out selling custom t-shirts, we’ve evolved into a community of statement makers. It is empowering to make a custom shirt and to wear that statement across your chest. For the last four years, Customized Girl has offered a statement maker scholarship to help students accomplish their collegiate goals. This year we mixed things up a bit with our scholarship. Instead of one statement maker receiving $2500,  we selected five influential candidates who would each receive $500 towards their education costs.  

We are not only honored to announce these powerful young adults but also ecstatic to share their lives with all of you.  Customized Girl asked all winners three questions:


1.) Describe yourself in three words?

2.) What is your ideal career path?

3.) Why is this statement important to you?


Without further ado, meet Customized Girl’s statement makers for 2016! 

Chanyell Anderson

Statement: If you want something you’ve never had, do something you’ve never done.

1.) I would happily describe myself as determined, loyal, and punctual. These three things are very important qualities to me so I try very hard to always emulate them. I think it’s important that everyone have a goal and be very determined and unmoving when it comes to reaching those goals. My punctuality is one of the things I take pride in. It makes me physically ill to even think about being late! Loyalty is something I appreciate in others and so I can give them no less.
2.) Well, I am already living part of my dream. I am a teacher. Right now, my career path includes going back to school for another degree so I can get a job as an instructional specialist within my school district. This would enable me to teach more kids and help more teachers. I will also be able to work as a curriculum writer for my district. This degree will open up many doors for me that are closed right now. I look forward to what the future holds!
3.) Well, there are a lot of things I would like to change about my life, simply because I find that I’m not satisfied with where I am right now. To me, if I want change to happen, then I have to do things I’ve never done (such as moving to a different city and going back to school) or I’ll never achieve what I want in life. It’s scary for me but it’s necessary if I want better things for myself.

Taylor Martz

​Statement: ​Broken crayons still color

1.) Devoted, Sociable, Creative
2.) My ideal career path after I finish my Masters degree would be to work in the marketing communications field to establish myself. In a few years, I would love to return to the realm of academia and become a professor in the department of communications! I am currently teaching an undergraduate course for freshman, and have loved every minute- so I feel as if this could be a great calling later on in my career.
3.) “Broken crayons still color” has been a guiding mantra in my personal life. I’ve battled my way through numerous ‘storms’ and, sometimes, I have felt as if the rain wasn’t ever going to stop and sunshine was a thing of the past. However, I’ve never failed to let the waves break my bow. I truly believe that when we come out on the other side of our storms and stand to face the sunshine, we can turn around and see where the sun was the whole time. Even through dark clouds, the sun is still present. 


Storms may bend us or try to break us, but they’re bleak in comparison to the bright sunshine on the other side. I try to search for the positive in each day, no matter how crummy. Being able to find the good within the bad has helped me realize my true potential in all situations, not just the successful ones. Just because we feel broken during hard times does not mean we’ve failed to make an impact on the lives of others during the process. Something as simple as your smile to the stranger in the grocery store, holding the door open for a mother with full hands, or offering up your seat on the bus can turn another’s day around. In the midst of brokenness, we’re still adding color and touching the lives of others– so instead of falling victim to the hurt, we can use our inner light to help guide our way through current and future storms.


Nicole Davidson

Statement: Trust your passion to outshine your fears

1.) I would describe myself as positive, genuine, and determined. I try my best to live everyday focused on my goals while being the best person I can be.
2.) I am currently a graduate student at West Chester University in Pennsylvania studying Higher Education Counseling and Student Affairs. I’m pursuing a career in higher education because I have a personal goal to help others and make a difference in a life wherever I can. I am an advocate for advanced learning for anyone who has the opportunity to pursue it. This field will allow me to work in an environment that opens me up to enriching experiences while providing opportunities for students to evolve and make an impact in the world around them. Universities help students find their passions in the world, without my college experience I would have never discovered my own. Throughout my career, if I can assist one individual, I’ve made a difference in someone’s life and that is important to me.
3.) “Trust your passion to outshine your fears.” This statement is important to me because it is so relevant in my life and what I see in the lives of many young individuals around me. As we transition from young individuals to adults, we all have goals and things we want to achieve. Sometimes I find myself hesitant or afraid for the possibility of difficulty or failure. But it is important to remember, if you are passionate about what you do or what you want to achieve, then no one can stop you from your version of success. You will always have fears or doubts but that should never keep you from pursing your dreams. Passion is enthusiasm, fascination, and obsession. There will always be challenges but never let a fear stand in the way of something you feel called to do.  

Brianda Barrera Olvera

Statement: Let success be measured by your happiness, not the other way around

1.) Organized, passionate, planner
2.) My ideal career path is to work in public relations for an agribusiness. I am fascinated by the importance of agriculture as well as public speaking and writing. The public relations department of an agribusiness just seems like the most ideal place for me to work. 


3.) This statement is important to be because I spent most of my high school junior year struggling what I wanted to do with my life. I had convinced myself to become a dentist but I began to lean towards a career in agriculture. When others heard of this, including my family, they began to tell me that a career in dentistry was the most successful thing to do and that I wouldn’t find much success in agricultural communications. Their thoughts almost became my thoughts but I had to remind myself that I defined my own success. I decided that whichever career would make me the happiest is the career I would be most successful in.


Jordyn Geenty

Statement: You can’t live in the past, but it is okay to look back at it and smile

1.) I would describe myself as determined, crafty, and loyal

2.) My ideal career path is education. I think that teaching is very important because it is the only profession that creates all other professions. I am enrolled in classes now working toward my teaching degree and I am excited to have my own classroom in just a few years. I have been in a number of classrooms helping out and my favorite so far have been 3rd-5th grade so that is where I am hoping to get placed when I finish college.

3.) This statement is important to me because I love to think about great memories I’ve had but I would then become stuck in those times until I realized that it’s okay to remember the past but I cannot live in it because I would never be able to create new memories that I can also look back on and smile.


Thanks again to everyone who entered our scholarship contest.  We already cannot wait for next year’s entries and to hear all of your amazing and innovative statements. No need to worry if you missed out for Customized Girl’s scholarship in 2016. We host our scholarship annually before the start of every school so make sure to stay tuned with all things Customized Girl!

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2015 Customized Girl Statement Maker Scholarship Winner – Marisa Lucht

A statement  is an opinion or attitude that you express through the things you do, the things you say, and even the way you dress.  At Customized Girl, we just can’t get enough of statement makers.

For the last two years we have been seeking out women who are doing extraordinary and interesting things. One of our objectives is to celebrate and bring those young women everywhere  together to create a community of statement makers. We believe that girls should be free to say what they want, when they want, and  ultimately express themselves. To help enhance those opportunities, we wanted to give these trailblazers a platform to raise their voices and captivate the world. The Customized Girl Statement Maker scholarship was born!

We are thrilled with the hundreds of inspiring and wonderful submission’s we received this year. Every statement was so impactful and incredible it was a difficult task of choosing just one.

The Customized Girl Scholarship is awarded to the girl with the most important and creative message to share. We are proud to announce this year’s statement maker and scholarship winner of $2,500 – Marisa Lucht!

Marisa’s statement: Don’t be afraid to use glitter pens while writing your future.

We love this statement because it confirms that women are in charge of their own future and only they have the ability to control it and make it incredible. For too long, women have been living up to the expectations of others.

We sat down and talked to Marisa and asked her why this statement is so important to her and her plans for school and beyond.  This is what she had to say:


What are you studying?

I am currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics. Right now I am taking a lot of math and science courses but also have had a chance to take theology and philosophy because of Notre Dame’s university requirements. Next year I hope to take more economics, business, and computer science courses to decide if any of these areas are something I want to double major in.


Why did you choose Notre Dame?

From the moment I stepped foot onto the Notre Dame campus, I felt at home. Nothing compares to the Fighting Irish family and I am so fortunate to be part of such a strong community. Besides Notre Dame’s amazing community, I also love the emphasis on spirituality and intellectual growth. At Notre Dame, the staff and all of the students care about who you are as a person. As I continue my education it has been phenomenal to be challenged through my school work and also by my peers who encourage me to grow in my faith and give back to the community through volunteerism. Finally, if all of this was not enough, I am a sports fanatic and love cheering on all the Fighting Irish sports teams. My experience at Notre Dame has been extraordinary and I am truly blessed to have the opportunity to attend such a premier university.


Your statement was all about writing your own future. What do you see in your future

In the future, I hope to make a difference. Whether that is doing research to help policy makers create legislation that changes the lives of everyone in America or if it is simply making my little sister laugh. I want to leave the world a better place than it was when I came into it. In order to do this, I know that I must not be afraid to stand out and stand up for what I believe is right. We dictate our futures, so anything is possible.

Your major is “Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics”. Awesome. How can we (as a society, as an industry) recruit more young women into technology fields?

To encourage more young women to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, we should begin asking them if they enjoy solving problems rather than if they are good at science. By shifting the focus from having an arbitrary skill set to making them think about if they are curious about the world, we can open their eyes to all the possible STEM careers they may be interested in. We must teach young women not to be afraid to be themselves. Women are problem solvers. Women are inventive. Women have the power to shape the future by pursuing fields in technology.

We were inspired by Marisa’s statement and hope it can inspire more girls to stand up and be statement makers. Thanks again to everyone who entered our scholarship contest! We cannot wait for next year’s contest and to hear all of your amazing statements!

Customized Girl wants to increase opportunities for bold, young women and with the addition of custom apparel storefront, they have even more chances to to express themselves and leave their mark on the world.

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2014 Customized Girl Statement Maker Scholarship Winner – Maggie Noriega

Last year we established Customized Girl’s statement maker scholarship. We are all about statement makers and celebrating those who have an important message to share with the world. Statements are what we love and that’s why our scholarship is centered on not only making them but helping spread their awareness. Every girl has a statement to make and we wanted to give a platform to those individuals who wanted to have their voice heard. With this platform we also wanted to offer the opportunity for these young, inspirational women to win money to go towards their college tuition.

Once again, we received hundreds of amazing and motivational submissions that made this year’s decision extra difficult. Each statement had it’s own personality and powerful voice but there was one statement that intrigued our judge’s the most.

Customized Girl is proud to announce our second annual statement maker scholarship winner of $2,500 – Maggie Noriega!

Maggie’s statement: Live your life as if you had an infinite amount of confetti.

We love this statement because it is important message to everyone to not sweat the small stuff and to live your life to the fullest. Sometimes we all can get lost in insignificant tasks or drama that come with life but all that matters is what makes you happy and what legacy you want to leave in this world. It’s a great message to celebrate even the smallest success’ that you accomplish and if you fail – pick yourself back up and try again.

Recently, we sat down and talked to Maggie and asked her why this statement is so important to her and her plans for school and beyond.  This is what she had to say:

What are you looking forward to the most in your college career?

I look forward to meeting new people and exploring new places. I can’t wait to experience the changes college will bring.

What are your hobbies?

A main hobby of mine is watching movies. I’ve seen 45 out of 100 movies on the American Film Institute’s “100 greatest American Films of all time” list. My goal is to watch all 100 of them by the end of 2015! I also love hiking, listening to music, and going to museums.

Why is this statement so important to you?

I love this quote because it’s saying to celebrate every happy, successful, and joyous moment in your life. It reminds me to enjoy the little things, and don’t be afraid to celebrate even the tiniest success. It also reminds me to be grateful for everything that I am lucky to have.

How did you come across this statement? Is it something someone told you or did you come up with it yourself?

I actually overheard this statement from a crew leader while I was working in Yellowstone. Thanks Jarrett! I never thought something so brief, that wasn’t even said to me directly would impact my life in such a positive way.

What does the world need to know about you?

I think the world needs to know that I want to make a positive change. In the earth, myself, and the people around me. Also they need to know how appreciative I am for this award! It’s so cool to be recognized for something so small. A last thank you to everyone that has been in my life so far. Excited to see where the future will take me!

We were inspired by Maggie’s statement and hope it can inspire more girls to stand up and be statement makers.
Congrats Maggie – We wish you all the best in college!

No worries if you missed out entering this year. We will host our scholarship annually before the start of every school. Stay updated with Customized Girl and make sure to check out last years scholarship winner!

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Kim Hamper, Girl Develop It Chapter Leader

Our latest Statement Maker, Kim Hamper, is the Columbus, Ohio chapter leader of Girl Develop It. Girl Develop It is one of few dedicated organizations who’s mission it is to diversify the computer science industry by encouraging and educating women and girls interested in website development and design.

Read below for what Kim has to say about Girl Develop It and how she personally entered the world of software development!

Statement Maker Kim Hamper

What is Girl Develop It?

Girl Develop It provides affordable and accessible events and classes to women who want to learn programming skills.

How many GDI chapters are there? Are there any overseas?

The number of chapters keeps on growing! Currently, we have 25 chapters across the United States and Canada with more new chapter applications being processed for cities in North America and beyond. It’s amazing to see how much Girl Develop It has grown since it was founded in 2010.

Were you always interested in website/software development and coding?

Many times I considered trying out coding. During one phase of college, I was sure I was going to minor in computer science (this was somewhere in between the Film Studies and French Language stages), but I never took a single computer science course! It wasn’t until 2011, after I received Build Your Own Website the Right Way as a present, that I finally got started.

How did you get started coding?

So, as I mentioned, I started learning HTML and CSS from the book Build Your Own Website the Right Way. I built a terrible/awesome website in bright orange with cats, and I was totally hooked. I put my tax return towards an online course on programming in PHP next, and just a few months later I started working towards a master’s degree in software engineering.

Was coding your first career path?

Nope! I eventually settled on biology for my college major, but still had a wide range of interests and no idea what I wanted to do after I graduated. I interned at a human rights non-profit and worked as a Quality Control Engineer (basically lots of analysis and statistics) post-graduation before moving back to Ohio and discovering software development.

What about website/software development keeps you interested? Why have you decided to do it for a living?

The main reason: it’s exciting to make something tangible and immediately useful to other people. You also never stop learning as a developer, which keeps things interesting. There’s so much that goes into creating applications and websites. Even if I’m having a more creative, less analytical day, I can focus on the design of an application, or I can nerd out on marketing concepts and improving the usability of an app. There are a lot of different roles you can jump into under the “developer” umbrella.

How did you get involved with GDI?

I had just moved to Columbus in 2011 and joined the Meetup group for Girl Develop It Columbus (GDIC). Jen Myers (our chapter founder) sent out a message that she was looking for an Assistant Organizer. I hadn’t been to a single GDIC event yet and I hadn’t coded anything except my fabulous bright orange website, but I thought, why not? To my surprise, Jen gave me the position!

How long have you been the Columbus, Ohio GDI Chapter Leader?

I’ve been the chapter leader since early 2013, so a little over a year now.

Why is it important that we have organizations, like GDI, that encourage women to enter the world of web design and development?

The ratio of women-to-men in computer science and developer positions has been decreasing since the 1980s (when, according to Wikipedia, it was 38%). Diversity in general in the technology field is incredibly low. Organizations like GDI are working to increase diversity and open the technology field to new people with a variety of backgrounds. Many of the women involved with GDIC either didn’t have access to formal computer science education or didn’t realize that computer science was an option for them in school.

How can someone interested in learning coding get involved with GDI? Who can sign up for GDI

Come drop by an event and say hi! We have a Hack Night once a month which is a great starting point for learning about coding and Girl Develop It. We also have other events like regular Code and Coffees, as well as our classes. Our events are generally beginner-friendly and open to all levels. Our next coding class is an introductory programming class (in Ruby) slated for June, and any adult can sign up for a GDI class. We are targeted at women, but men who are passionate about our mission statement are always welcome. We have scholarships available to women for classes if cost (usually $80 for a four-week, eight-hour class) is a barrier, and we can usually find an extra laptop if a student needs to borrow one.

Finally, we’re also looking for a co-chapter leader, and have a slew of other volunteer/teacher positions open. If someone reading is interested in getting involved, send me an email (kim@girldevelopit.com). Even if you’ve only made a really terrible/awesome bright orange website, I would love to hear from you.

Find us here:
Meetup (for upcoming classes and events): http://www.meetup.com/girldevelopitcbus
GDIC Twitter
GDIC Facebook
Website: Girl Develop It
Girl Develop It

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