Michael Neiswander
Lenora and Walter F. Brown San Antonio Forty Acres Scholarship
Forty Acres Scholars Class of 2022
Hometown
San Antonio, TX
High School
Northside Health Careers High School

Hello. I am Michael and last summer I was nearly trampled by a very impatient Zambian elephant. True story... I might do a TED talk over it one day. But in all seriousness, my name is Michael Neiswander and the reason I was almost that elephant's roadkill is because I was volunteering for a nonprofit known as World Bicycle Relief in Zambia, where I worked alongside the CEO, both aiding on the business side and the hands-on side in which I literally was making bicycles (I was awful at this). Helping other people is one of my passions and this manifests in my career goal of being an entrepreneur and creating a medical tech company with a focus on medical innovation to hopefully decrease inefficiencies in hospitals and allow for less expensive and more efficient patient care. Attending Health Careers High School for the past four years and working in the hospital for countless hours, I have seen said inefficiencies first hand that irked me. As someone who has personally experienced the crippling financial burden of healthcare, it baffled me how lackadaisical the hospital administration and staff were when it came to ensuring minimal patient cost. This occurred as a result of worker negligence, but also due to poor equipment. My goal is to ameliorate this issue by having a medical innovation tech company which aims to minimize patient cost by increasing hospital efficiency through groundbreaking medical technology. With my background in the medical field and my future in the world of business, I plan to combine my two skills to make this goal reality. 

Majors:

Business Honors; Finance

Honors Program:

Business Honors Program

Other Academic Interests:

Nutrition and Entrepreneurship

Extracurricular Activities:

Throughout high school, I spent most of my time playing tennis on the varsity tennis team, playing piano at a national level, building websites and restaurant analytic services for my company, and working alongside the CEO of World Bicycle Relief in Zambia to provide underprivileged families with a means of transportation across expansive distances. 

What drew you to the Forty Acres Scholars Program?

Coming from a class of under two hundred students, facing an incoming freshman class of around nine thousand students is surely a daunting task. On top of this, the pressure of paying for college plagued myself and my parents. Upon looking around for scholarship opportunities which would be inevitably essential in my attendance at The University of Texas, by the grace of God, I found out about this program, perhaps the single greatest discovery I have made in my life. I can remember when I got my Forty Acres Finalist info packet, which included a general synopsis of the program. After reading about all the unique opportunities granted to scholars, including volunteer and group vacation activities, I turned to my dad, looked him dead in the eye and said, "This is literally the best thing ever". The opportunities the Forty Acres Scholar Program grants scholars are unmatched by anything I have seen. From decorating pumpkins with kids for Halloween to writing Valentine's Cards for children in Dell Children's Hospital to a Freshman Dinner Series which allows the incoming scholar cohort to bond over dinner while listening to influential speakers, this program truly has it all. More than just covering the multitude of costs of being a college student, the Forty Acres Scholars Program offers an immersive experience of life, allowing young people such as myself to not only enjoy college to the fullest, but become a more well-rounded and apt person for day-to-day life outside of school, preparing me for both professional and personal relationships outside of the Forty Acres. Being a part of this close-knit community of scholars has mitigated my apprehension of diving into such a large body of students by giving me a family of amazing people who will be by my side for the next four years and beyond.