A Journey Measured by Change

Gifts to the Dartmouth College Fund help make great things happen for our students. Here is one of their stories.

Dominique Dadekian ’18 grew up in Merrimack, New Hampshire—less than two hours from the Dartmouth campus. “I drove up here with my mom, and we walked around, and I just totally fell in love.” 

“I felt like I could be a person here and not get lost in the shuffle. It seems like it was just yesterday, but it also seems like forever ago, because I have changed a lot.”

The day she received her acceptance letter was one of the most important moments of Dominique’s life: “I've had a lot of ‘moments’ here and I've been able to do so many different things, but without that one day of getting into Dartmouth, none of that would have been possible.”

A first-generation college student, Dominique was also the first person from her high school to be accepted to an Ivy League college. Her strong interests in science and Spanish drew her to the Tucker Foundation’s Center for Service. Through Tucker she has traveled to Nicaragua to help set up a pop-up medical clinic with doctors from Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and the Geisel School of Medicine, and participates in ACTS (Americans Caring Teaching Sharing), a spring-break program that fosters cross-cultural awareness and promotes sustainable health, education, and agriculture. She is also an undergraduate adviser and campus tour guide.

None of these opportunities would be possible for Dominique without the support of financial aid.

“I don't know if donors realize the immediate impact of their donations. It’s huge! When I saw my financial aid award letter, I realized that most of my college would be paid for. It was like this load had been lifted off me; I thought I was going to be in hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt after college and I didn't know how to pay it back.

“Your donation really matters on an individual level. I have my story, and it means the world to me, but I'm sure there are 2,000 other students here who have similar stories where financial assistance meant everything to them. To everyone who helped make Dartmouth possible, thank you. I can't thank you enough.”