Nicholas Vukovich
winners 2014

Nicholas Vukovich will attend Pomona College in the fall. Inspired by his brother, he plans to study neuroscience with the hope of working in genetic research to find out what triggers autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders. Throughout high school, Nicholas held various leadership positions, including captain of the varsity cross country team, serving on the Daily Herald Leadership Team and being active in the HAVE (Helping Autistic Voices Emerge) Dreams program as their youngest volunteer.

Nicholas says “The American Dream…means that hard work and a strong desire in America can lead to great things. Of course, a little luck (and people who believe in you) does not hurt either… So, do hard work and determination lead to “The American Dream”? I believe they can, but you need to be persistent, and often times work harder and smarter than others. But I have found that one of the keys to “The American Dream” is having people that believe in you, support your efforts, and encourage you to never give up.” He credits his family for their constant support and encouragement to work his hardest. Nicholas hopes that his hard work and dedication will eventually land him a career at the National Institute of Health or UC-Davis MIND Institute.