Signal Mountain graduate receives a prestigious scholarship from Volkswagen
Posted on 07/12/2019
Photo of Aileen Santelmann.Aileen Santelmann, a 2019 graduate of Signal Mountain High School who moved to Chattanooga from Germany as a teenager, has received a Duales Studium scholarship from Volkswagen in Germany. The scholarship is a dual study program that allows Santelmann to earn her degree while also working for Volkswagen. Only two people from Germany received the scholarship this year.

Santelmann plans to attend college at Duale Hochschule Baden-Württemberg (DHBW) in Mannheim and Madrid, where she will study International Business. Her career goals are to pursue a career in personnel management and marketing. Volkswagen is a dual partner with the university Santelmann will attend that combines theoretical learning with practical experience. Santelmann will work at the Volkswagen Nutzfahrzeuge plant in Hannover and also at a Volkswagen location in Poland. She will travel every three months, rotating between school and work.

Santelmann moved to the United States in 2015 when she was 14 years old. The talented student graduated high school with a 3.933 GPA and received a Bilingual International Baccalaureate diploma from Signal Mountain High School.

The scholarship Santelman earned is part of the over $11 million in scholarship offers that Signal Mountain High graduates received this year. Graduates from Hamilton County Schools tripled the amount of scholarship money offered to seniors this year, with a total of $95 million in scholarship offers extended to the Class of 2019. Hamilton County Schools increased the number of students enrolling in AP, dual enrollment and International Baccalaureate classes during the 2018-2019 school year. The total for the year was 2,867, which is 916 more students than the 1,951 enrolled in a class during the 2017-2018 school year.

The action area Future Ready Students in the district’s Future Ready 2023 five-year action plan includes how the school system will address better preparing graduates for success after high school. There is also a Focus Five performance target in the plan that includes additional AP, IB, and dual enrollment opportunities.

Photo: Aileen Santelmann, a 2019 graduate of Signal Mountain High School