Beck Scholar Daniel Kendall Proves the Power of Perseverance

April 17, 2017

Flooding and displacement from Hurricane Sandy weren’t enough to knock Daniel Kendall off his path toward a college degree. Neither were his family’s serious medical issues, career changes, or impending tuition bills for three siblings.

Despite one challenge after the next, nothing could stop this Point Pleasant teenager from putting in the work to maintain excellent grades, numerous advanced placement courses, and active participation in the rugby and science teams at Christian Brothers Academy in Lincroft.

But the cost of education always loomed as a potential barrier.

While in high school – a private, Catholic school – Daniel took the unique approach of founding a painting business with his mother to defray the costs of tuition.

“At first, the idea of painting with my mom brought me embarrassment,” said Daniel in 2014. “Today, painting for me defines the hard work and perseverance necessary to succeed.”

This hard-earned lesson, and the realization that hard work could open new doorways, led him to seek a scholarship through the Community Foundation of New Jersey – but not before he was accepted into the University of Notre Dame. The impending tuition bills would be coming soon, and they would be big.

After a little bit of research, it became clear to Daniel that the Elsie E. and Joseph W. Beck Memorial Scholarship Fund – which placed an emphasis on students’ character, promise, and potential – was the right scholarship to pursue.

In his application, Daniel emphasized his experiences in school and life that led him to pursue a pre-medicine major at Notre Dame. The Community Foundation’s scholarship committee – made up of Board members and other active community members – was instantly impressed and awarded Daniel a four-year scholarship to help defray costs.

Daniel’s college career would go off without a hitch.

He would go on to declare a Neuroscience and Behavior major in the College of Sciences, and begin volunteering at the South Bend Center for the Homeless and also the Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center where he gained valuable clinical experience in patient care.

“Notre Dame has taught me to work harder and more efficiently,” explained Daniel in his first-year update to the Community Foundation.

By his junior year, Daniel would become active in GlobeMed, a club on campus that focuses on international health development. Inspired by this student organization, Daniel decided to pick up a minor in International Development Studies through the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at Notre Dame.

He spent spring break of his junior year in Kentucky with the Christian Appalachia Project and the summer between his junior and senior year completing global health research in Kampala, Uganda.

He also assumed an active role in the neuroscience lab of Dr. Patrick Sheets at Indiana University School of Medicine South Bend, where he studies three-dimensional models of neural networks in the brain that relate to fear and pain.

After graduation, Daniel plans to work in healthcare consulting before applying to medical school in the future.

For a young man who once painted houses with his mother to cover the cost of high school, Daniel has come a long way. The Community Foundation is enormously proud of his hard work, and to have played a small role in his academic success.

“Coming to Notre Dame I would never have guessed that I would be able to…gain all of these incredible experiences,” said Daniel. “Thank you again for your continued support of my studies and for all that you do to make my educational dreams a reality.”

Click to learn more about the Elsie E. and Joseph W. Beck Scholarship Fund, and how this one-time private foundation came to the Community Foundation of New Jersey.

Click to learn more about scholarship funds at the Community Foundation of New Jersey.