Second year in a row Orcas teen is awarded competitive Amazon Future Engineer scholarship

Once again, an Orcas Island High School graduate is one of 100 United States students to receive an Amazon Future Engineer scholarship.

Zoe Lewis-Shunk, class of 2020, has been awarded $40,000 to study computer science at a college of her choice as well as a paid internship at Amazon next summer. This is the second year of the program. Parker Landsman, OISD class of 2019, received the same scholarship last year.

“I applied for it not thinking that I would get it because it’s very selective,” Lewis-Shunk said. “However, I had hopes of getting it, especially excited about the internship, but also a large amount of tuition it could cover.”

Recipients also received a selection of “college essentials,” including a Prime Student membership, Fire HD 8 tablet and $100 credit to use for college textbook needs.

Lewis-Shunk plans to study computer science at the Paul G. Allen School at the University of Washington but is on a waitlist for Stanford University.

“I’ve always been interested in computer science, ever since I went to a camp at UW. I think computer science can impact a lot of lives and innovate a lot of methods to help the world,” Lewis-Shunk said.

This year’s scholarship recipients come from 30 states, and more than 50 percent of them identify as female. All of the students qualify for financial assistance for college. The first group of winners in 2019 included three students from Washington. This year, Lewis-Shunk is joined by fellow Washingtonian Preston Rivas from Burlington.

According to Amazon, the Future Engineer program is “taking the childhood-to-career approach to inspire and educate children and young adults. It’s part of Amazon’s $50 million investment in computer science/STEM education. The company has donated more than $10 million to organizations that promote such programs across the country.”