Making Yale Possible—The Fred A. Simmons Family Scholarship
Tarek Ziad DC ’20 can be seen all around Yale. When not in class, the dual major in theater studies and ecology works in a lab, appears in productions on the university’s various stages, performs and travels with the Heritage Theater Ensemble, and serves as co-director of the Yale Exit Players, the oldest improv group on campus. To many first-year students, however, Tarek is immediately recognizable as one of the first faces they meet at Yale.
“I starred in the first-year orientation videos for the dean’s office,” Tarek says with a laugh. “Pretty much the whole new class this year watched it. I get a lot of looks during the day, and sometimes students around campus will call out my name.”
It is easy to see why the dean’s office cast him in a starring role: Tarek’s love and enthusiasm for Yale are abundant. “I looked at a couple of colleges,” he said “but the people at Yale stood out. I could tell this was a special place. We collaborate with each other here, and there’s a team spirit that makes Yale a very welcoming place.”
A participant in the QuestBridge program, which links low-income students with educational opportunities, Tarek can attend Yale thanks to the Fred A. Simmons Family Scholarship Fund. Dr. Fred Simmons ’57, who died in 2014, made a bequest establishing a scholarship for Yale College students.
“It is very profound to know that someone who graduated years ago has helped to make Yale possible for me,” Tarek says. ‟I am so thankful to Dr. Simmons and his family for giving me this chance.”