11 February, 2022

DAIS Middle School Student Received Prestigious Awards

aman tesfu

In 2021, DAIS Middle School student Aman Tesfu became a Finalist for the prestigious Caroline D. Bradley (CDB) Scholarship and was also awarded Grand Honors by the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY).

We interviewed Aman to learn about the lengthy and tough application process he went through and how this great accomplishment changed his life. We hope that his example will inspire other students and their families to go above and beyond.

Aman's Journey

To become a CDB Finalist, Aman took on the rigorous application process, broadly similar to a university application. It included a few essays, middle school transcripts, letters of recommendation, work samples, and a final virtual interview. Aman focused his application on his love of reading, running, and his deep interest in STEM. He also submitted a supplemental work sample to display his appreciation of Chinese culture which made him stand out from other applicants.

Aman said that writing the application essays was a challenging yet inspiring process; it required an immense amount of patience, hard work, self-reflection, as well as feedback from his incredibly supportive teachers, family, and friends.

stem class

Aman volunteering for a STEM Class

Aman highlighted that the CDB application process provided him a unique opportunity to practice and continue to develop many of the skills that he has learned in and out of DAIS. For instance, the work sample projects involved learning and applying new concepts, troubleshooting, redesigning, and most importantly having a growth mindset - core competences that we cultivate at Dalian American International School.

Aman is honored to become a CDB Finalist and emphasized that most of the reward comes from going through the application process itself which fosters invaluable personal reflection and growth. As he continues his studies at DAIS and prepares for college and beyond, this experience will help him better deal with future challenges.

run to school

Aman completing his video essay “Run to School”

Aman’s application was read and chosen as a Finalist by a selection committee comprised of deans and directors of admission from highly selective colleges, universities, and independent schools throughout the United States. In their notification letter, the committee noted that Aman distinguished himself as an exemplary student with immeasurable potential. As one of the 47 Finalists for the 2021 CDB Program, Aman also received USD 1200 voucher towards his education.

At the end of the interview Aman added that the whole CDB application process would not have been possible without the support of his parents, teachers, counselor, family, and friends. He wants to especially acknowledge Ms. Rowena Liu, Ms. Sophie Lippert, Mr. Ben Beach, Ms. Amanda Stark, and Ms. Emily Foster for their support throughout the application process.

cat feeder

Aman working on a STEM project

As we mentioned above, Aman was also awarded Grand Honors by the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY). Having qualified for the John Hopkins CTY program, Aman will be able to partake in the suite of academically rigorous summer and online programs hosted by Johns Hopkins.

Congratulations to Aman on these accomplishments! Our school is immensely proud of him, and we wish him great success in his future studies.


The CDB scholarship is a full four-year, merit-based high school scholarship in the United States. The scholarship enables bright-minded middle school students to explore and access high school and early college opportunities that provide young adults with an optimal educational match for their high school education. More information can be found here.

The Johns Hopkins CTY is a non-profit that aims to bring together curious minds of the next generation for an unparalleled academic challenge. From the tens of thousands of students worldwide that test with CTY, it bestows the Grand Honors award to those who score amongst the highest. Look for detailed information here.