Updates From Our 2021 Narcolepsy Scholarship Recipients

Thank You From College!

Acknowledged. Validated. Inspired. Supported. Heard. Your generosity made a profound impact on this year’s 31 Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship recipients. During this month of giving thanks, we’re thanking YOU by sharing college updates from the 2021 scholarship recipients.


“My favorite class is Philosophy of Human Nature. It is interesting to learn about the way humans think and the philosophers who help guide our morals today.

Managing my narcolepsy in college hasn’t been as bad as I thought it might be. I have dealt with it by taking naps between my classes and during my free time, so that I am energized enough to manage all of the work I have to do.

Receiving the Jack and Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship has had a huge impact on my life. It is empowering to know there is a scholarship for students like me with narcolepsy. It made me feel supported and let me know there are other students out there going through the same thing.”

— Alyssa, studying Biological Sciences (Pre-med) at Fordham University

“Helped me regain my strength”

“I have been really enjoying my General Chemistry class. My professor is funny, the concepts are interesting, and I love having a weekly lab.

I have managed my narcolepsy surprisingly well so far, despite my fears of not being able to keep up with college. While I still have my down moments, I haven’t missed any classes and I feel like I fully understand the topics being taught.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship helped me feel less alone during a time when I desperately needed some positivity and excitement. This award helped me regain my strength and find confidence in my abilities, and motivated me to keep pursuing my goals.”

— Emma, studying Environmental Science at Jefferson College

“Made me feel good about myself”

“My favorite class is Chemistry. I’m really good at it and enjoy the concepts we’re learning.

Managing my narcolepsy at college has gone pretty well so far. I haven’t been falling asleep constantly every day, and I’ve been getting an ample amount of sleep each night.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel good about myself, now knowing that it is possible for me to earn scholarships.”

— Brandon, studying Mechanical Engineering at Kennesaw State University

“My story matters”

“My favorite class so far is Psychology. It doesn’t feel like school since it is something I enjoy learning about.

I’ve been exhausted every day at college, but I have a support system here and home. If I miss something most of my professors post the class notes online, and they know I have narcolepsy. I have a lot of fears when it comes to getting through college with narcolepsy, but I’m not letting anything discourage me from trying my best.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel like my story matters and that I should be speaking about it more openly.”

— Jada, studying Psychology at University of Cincinnati

“Part of a community”

“My favorite class is Introduction to Economics. I find it practical and interesting.

To help manage my narcolepsy in college, I schedule my classes later in the morning and make sure I have a healthy sleep routine every night.

Being awarded the Jack and Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel heard. It’s amazing to be part of a community that can relate to my issues, which allows me to know I’m not alone.”

— Tyler, studying Business & Enterprise at Wake Forest University

“Inspired me to feel confident”

“My favorite class is Invasions in Biology, which focuses on invasive species. We get to go off campus for our lab and be outside working in the field.

My main fear starting college with narcolepsy was adapting to later nights with classes and social life, but I have actually found it to be much more manageable than I was expecting. Not many of my friends here knew what narcolepsy was, so they were very curious to learn about it. They are great about checking in with me.

The Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship helped me realize I’m not the only person trying to adjust to a brand new life with the added stress of a sleep disorder. It inspired me to feel confident in educating my peers about narcolepsy and how they can help, which gives me the opportunity to advocate for something that affects me every day!”

— Audrey, studying Biology at University of Richmond

“Gave me time to explore”

“I am taking a Black Power and Civil Rights class that I love. The professor is funny and open and encourages discussion.

Managing my narcolepsy in college has been difficult, especially with waking up for early classes and getting work done while feeling exhausted. Talking to the disability office was a small triumph because the woman I worked with was empathetic and supportive.

I am very grateful for the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship, because it gave me precious time not spent working in my first semester to explore new clubs and organizations, and find a community.”

— Anjana, studying Public Health and Philosophy, Politics, & Economics at Ohio State University

“Made me feel heard”

“I always look forward to my First-Year Composition class because I love writing. I admire the instructor and get along with her really well.

To manage my idiopathic hypersomnia in college, I stay in touch with the Disability Resource Center and my instructors. They are all understanding. It has been difficult to wake up, go to class, and stay awake at times, but I’ve managed better than expected and have amazing grades.

The Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel heard. I realized how many other people are in my shoes, and it meant the world for an organization to recognize my struggles and want to help me succeed. I also met one of my best friends through this scholarship, and I love getting to experience Purdue with her!

— Porsha, studying English Education at Purdue University

“The support I needed”

“My favorite college class is Dance, because despite my ten years of experience, my professor has been able to push me to do more and be better.

My first couple weeks of class, I did extremely well! Because of my narcolepsy, I have had more difficulty staying awake and having energy as the semester progresses, but I have people to support me and help me through. 

I cannot begin to express my gratitude for this scholarship! I was overjoyed at the news that I was a recipient, and it has given me the confidence and support I needed in making this adjustment.”

— Schuyler, studying Music & Theater at The University of Mount Union

“Acknowledged and validated”

“I really enjoy my General Chemistry labs. I find it fascinating how the theoretical principles we learn apply so accurately to real, tangible experiments.

I have done fairly well managing my narcolepsy in college so far. One of my biggest fears was how people would respond, but I have been fortunate to find people who are supportive and understanding.

The Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship signified the last bit of money I needed to fulfill my goal of attending Creighton University. It also meant a lot to me emotionally, as I felt as if my struggles with narcolepsy were finally being acknowledged and validated.”

— Micah, studying Exercise Science at Creighton University

“Following my dreams”

“My favorite class is Survey of Recording Industry, because I have already learned so much about how to maintain ownership and eventually have an income from the songs I write.

Every day in college with narcolepsy is a challenge, in the sense that my body feels and reacts differently to everything than other people’s. I have successfully established a nap schedule, which for me is half the battle.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship has allowed me to prove that even though narcolepsy has changed my life, it is not something that can prevent me from following my dreams.”

— Kamille, studying Music Business at Middle Tennessee State University

“Sparks happiness in my heart” 

“My favorite class is Intro to Anthropology, because of the course material and my outstanding professor. He makes the lectures enjoyable yet informative, which allows me to retain the information more easily.

To manage my narcolepsy at college, I’ve made supportive friends who study with me, keep me disciplined with school work, and help keep my mental health in check. Living on a smaller campus allows me to have easy access to take naps in my dorm room when needed.

Receiving the Jack and Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel validated and accomplished. It helped me realize that I am not alone. Seeing the beautiful community of students who earn this scholarship sparks happiness in my heart, as there are others who have experienced similar things doing so well in life.”

— Amber, studying Psychology at University of South Florida

“Recognized by people who understand”

“My philosophy class, Contemporary Moral Issues, is my favorite. The professor is very engaging and the coursework is just challenging enough to keep me motivated.

I have found that the biggest struggle in college with narcolepsy has been the fact that I cannot stay up late to study or finish assignments. My friends and roommate are incredible, and have supported me by being understanding and making me feel safe when I fear I may have a sleep attack.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel seen. Very few people can grasp the toll narcolepsy can have on academic success, and to be recognized by people who understand felt amazing.”

— Madalyn, studying Psychology at University of Maryland

“My goals are still within reach”

“My favorite class is Computer Applications for Business. I enjoy applying my own business ideas using the skills I’ve learned.

Managing my narcolepsy at college was a little tough at first, but I had already developed confidence telling people about my diagnosis in high school. College made me see that everyone has something they are dealing with (big or small), and I really have nothing to be afraid of.

The Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship helped me realize that my goals and desires are still within reach and with the right support, my narcolepsy can’t hold me back from enjoying the college experience. It also showed me there are a lot more people living with narcolepsy than I thought. It’s good to know I have a community of people I can count on to be there and understand what I’m going through.”

— Quentin, studying Accounting at University of North Florida

“Connected to others”

“My favorite class is Basic Design, which is a fashion course focusing on the industry and various aspects of fashion and designing. It’s fun because I get to create designs and make a portfolio; it applies creativity to learning.

So far I have not had a problem managing my narcolepsy in college. I have had to explain narcolepsy to a lot of my new friends, and it is interesting to see their reactions. Everyone has been supportive so far. Sometimes my friends even remind me to take my medication, which is so considerate of them.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship reminded me that there is a community of people who struggle with the same thing as me. It was nice to feel connected to others with a condition a lot of the people I meet know nothing about.”

— Lydia, studying Fashion Merchandising at Lipscomb University

“I’m finally being seen”

“My favorite class is Anatomy and Physiology. It’s awesome learning about the human body and how it works.

So far it has unfortunately been a struggle managing my idiopathic hypersomnia in college. While I have found amazing and supportive friends, I have difficulty finding the balance between my academics, social life, and taking care of myself.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship meant so much to me. I feel like I’m finally being seen as a person with IH and all of my hard work, struggles, and accomplishments are being recognized. This scholarship showed me I am not alone, and despite my sleep disorder I’m able to go to college.”

— Katie, studying Nursing at Florida Southern College

“I can put my focus and energy into schoolwork”

“My favorite class is Western Swing Dancing. I get to meet new people, learn to dance, and have a good time.

Managing my narcolepsy at college has been going very well. My teachers are supportive and willing to help me as much as they can.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship meant a lot to me. It allowed me to not have to work while going to school, so I can put all my focus and energy into my schoolwork.”

— Benjamin, studying Software Engineering at Snow College

“Helped me embrace my diagnosis”

“My favorite class in college so far is English 200. I love reading all the different short stories and feeling connections with the stories and the people in them.

Being in college with narcolepsy, I have bad days where I am too tired to get up, didn’t get enough sleep the night before, or had nightmares that kept me up during the night. However, college has been pretty great so far. I got approved for accommodations so that makes life a lot easier.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship meant the world to me. I cried the day I found out! It not only helped me financially but also mentally. It made me realize that having narcolepsy is okay, and helped me embrace my diagnosis.”

— Kelly, studying Occupational Therapy at Western Kentucky University

“People are here to support me”

“Design Fundamentals is my favorite class because I get to do silly photo editing projects. It allows me to practice my skills while having fun and being creative.

Being in college with narcolepsy, it is easy to get overly exhausted because of my classes, homework load, hanging out with friends, and the Arizona heat. But I have been managing well as I remind myself that it is necessary and completely okay to take breaks throughout the day.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship not only gave me the means to pay for part of my tuition, but it reminded me that I am not alone in my journey. There are other people who understand what I go through on a daily basis and they are here to support me.”

— Olivia, studying Digital Design at Grand Canyon University

“Made me feel less alone”

“My favorite class is Anthropology. It is an insightful and interesting look into humanity.

It has definitely been challenging to manage my narcolepsy in college because of my medication and cataplexy. My cataplexy has been worse since I got here, but I have been slowly adapting to the new and more rigorous environment. It is sometimes difficult to plan out timing for medication, but it has mostly worked out.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel less alone, because I realized there are many teens all over the country going through the same stage of life with narcolepsy. The book that came with the award made me feel very validated by exploring the thoughts and feelings that come with having narcolepsy.”

— Audrey, studying Environmental Engineering at Oregon State University

“Stress off my shoulders”

“College has been good so far. It was a big change from high school.

Managing my narcolepsy in college has been a challenge due to being out of state, but I have found a good support system to get me though the tough times.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship has helped so much. It has taken some of the stress of paying for school off my shoulders.”

— Garrett, studying Chemical Engineering at University of Alabama

“Extremely happy”

“My favorite class is Cultural Diversity in the Workplace. It touches on how to adapt and help employees and customers who are not from the same background or culture as oneself.

So far, I haven’t had much trouble dealing with my narcolepsy in college. I usually wake up, go to class, and go to the dorms to nap for a while.

I was extremely happy when I received the phone call telling me I had been awarded the scholarship. It has helped out so much financially and I really appreciate it.”

— Kyrin, studying Marketing at Texas Tech University

“I am more than my diagnosis”

“I love my Foundations of Journalism class so much! Learning about what journalism has been, is now, and could be in the future is such a fascinating topic to explore.

In college, it’s super easy to fall into unhealthy sleep patterns so I’ve had to be mindful of not losing all the progress I’ve made regarding my idiopathic hypersomnia. Talking to my roommate about my condition and asking her to help me stay accountable for my naps has been a huge help.

Receiving this scholarship showed me that I can be a strong student despite my IH. I was afraid that idiopathic hypersomnia would hold me back in school, but Project Sleep and the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship helped me realize I am more than my diagnosis.”

— Krissy, studying Journalism at Indiana University

“Helped me give my narcolepsy a voice”

“My favorite classes so far are Human Development and Spanish. I am currently undecided but I think I want to double major in these subjects, as they are fun and interesting.

I am very lucky to have made a supportive group of friends in college, one of whom researched hypersomnia diagnoses before I got to campus. I still have days where I struggle with managing my narcolepsy at school, but I have good days as well.

The Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship helped me give my narcolepsy a voice and realize I am not alone. It also made me feel like my story can help others who may be struggling with narcolepsy or idiopathic hypersomnia.”

— Emerence, Virginia Tech

“A support system and family”

“My favorite class is Intro to Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. I have learned about the different areas of pharmacy and gained professional development knowledge.

I was worried about moving away from home and not having someone to make sure I was up and ready for the day, but it has been easier than anticipated to manage my narcolepsy at college. While I am tired most days and take naps in between classes, I have developed a routine of going to sleep at a good time and getting my schoolwork completed when it’s assigned.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship meant gaining a support system and family that will be there throughout my journey. I was always scared to speak up about narcolepsy awareness or even narcolepsy in general, but this award helped me regain confidence in myself and not be afraid to talk about something I experience first-hand.”

— Brynnlee, studying Pharmaceutical Sciences at Purdue University

“Will help me get the most out of college”

“My favorite class this semester is my Genetics Seminar.

I have been managing my narcolepsy well through college so far. As my roommate does his daily tasks I ask myself if I need to do the same thing that day, and I’ll get out of bed and do it.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel like there is a support system outside of my family that understands and cares. This scholarship will help me get the most out of college as I will have to work outside of school that much less.”

— Miles, studying Genetics and Genomics at University of Wisconsin-Madison

“I am not alone in this fight”

“My favorite class is Writing, Literature, and Discourse. I love reading books from a number of culturally diverse authors, and it’s very interactive.

After the first two weeks, adjusting to college with narcolepsy was actually easier than I expected. Using an online calendar helps me manage my classes. My roommate and friends are very supportive and understanding of my condition.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me realize I am not alone in this fight, and there are other students who face the same daily struggles as I do.”

— Marlo, studying Political Science at Howard University

“There are people who truly understand”

“My favorite class is my Communications course on the dark side of relationships. It gives me a break from all the math I’m doing and is really interesting.

My professors have been accommodating with due dates, which has been a lifesaver while managing my narcolepsy at college. My schedule for this semester has been somewhat difficult in regards to being alert to do homework and study, but I think I have a better idea of how to schedule next semester to make things easier.

I’m attending my dream university, and I can do so without worrying about the financial side of things in part because of the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship. Knowing there are people who truly understand and are even going through the same things I am is really reassuring!”

— Cassie, studying Computer Science at University of Kentucky

“I can do whatever I put my mind to”

“Agriculture 102 is my favorite class because the work is interesting. I enjoy studying how the different aspects of agriculture impact our lives.

With narcolepsy in college, I feel like sometimes it is difficult to have a decent sleep schedule and still try to get schoolwork done and have a social life. It can be hard not being able to grind through study time without falling asleep.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel like I wasn’t the only one out there living with narcolepsy. It helps to remind yourself there are other people dealing with the same thing. It made me feel like I can do whatever I put my mind to even with narcolepsy.”

— Spencer, studying Agricultural Business at Emmanuel College

“Made me feel powerful”

“My favorite class in college is biology and the accompanying lab. During lab we do lots of hands-on activities and monitor nearby river systems.

Managing my narcolepsy in college has been a big adjustment, but I have found new ways to boost my energy throughout the day. All of my friends are supportive. They understand the impacts of my narcolepsy and how to handle a situation if I fall asleep.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship made me feel powerful and in control of my narcolepsy. Narcolepsy has always controlled my life and now I am proud to say I feel more control over it.”

— Alyssa, Pre-med at Washington and Lee University

“It is possible to be a college student with narcolepsy”

“I love all my classes, but English 111 is my favorite. The class is always fun and I love the professor!

I have been doing really well with managing my narcolepsy at college. All my professors have been very supportive and my classmates always help me if I’m struggling to stay awake.

Receiving the Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship gave me a lot of confidence and showed me that it is possible to be a college student with narcolepsy. It has also helped me financially adjust to college in a different state.”

— Bailey, studying Mechatronic Engineering at University of Tennessee-Martin

Your Impact

All this is because of YOU. The generosity of supporters, families, other non-profits, and corporations is what has allowed Project Sleep to award 126 scholarships in just eight years.

Special thanks to Jazz Pharmaceuticals and Harmony Biosciences, LLC for their generous contributions to support this year’s program.

Support Big Dreams

Project Sleep aims to release the 2022 Jack & Julie Narcolepsy Scholarship application the first week of January 2022.

You can play a role in improving the lives of others and building a brighter future with an end-of-year tax-deductible gift to Project Sleep today. Your donation or Facebook Fundraiser in honor of #GivingTuesday, Nov. 30, 2021 will go so far to support BIG DREAMS. Thank you!

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