The following article, FVTC student wins $100,000 tuition prize during Pac-12 championship game, was written by Duke Behnke and published on December 4, 2017 in the Post-Crescent.
FVTC student wins $100,000 tuition prize during Pac-12 championship game
Fox Valley Technical College student Trent Waring won a $100,000 scholarship for tuition Friday, December 1 during halftime of the Pac-12 football championship game between Stanford and USC in Santa Clara, California.
The prize was part of the 2017 Dr. Pepper tuition giveaway promotion. Waring claimed the money by outscoring another finalist 11 to 10 in a contest to toss as many footballs as possible into a target within 30 seconds.
Waring, 19, became emotional as he accepted the $100,000 check in a ceremony broadcast live on ESPN.
"I felt pretty excited, happy," Waring told USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin on Saturday. "I felt like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders."
Waring is enrolled in FVTC's Fire Protection Technician program and is studying to be a firefighter and paramedic. He is a 2017 graduate of Appleton East High School.
The $100,000 can be used for tuition at FVTC and beyond.
"I'm not going to switch my program," Waring said, "but after I finish, I might pick up something else. I might go to nursing school. I want to get as much knowledge as I can."
Chris Jossart, manager of media relations at FVTC, offered his congratulations to Waring.
"It's very cool," Jossart said. "It's life-changing, really. It's awesome. Kudos to him."
Waring applied for the Dr. Pepper scholarship. He submitted a video as part of the selection process.
In the video, Waring said he is working three jobs in addition to being a full-time student. "Ever since I was a little kid, I wanted to be able to help and heal people," he said. "With the recent shooting in Las Vegas, I've become even more driven to become a paramedic."
Waring said he made the video at 12:30 a.m. after a long night at work. "It's a really bad video, but apparently they liked it," he said.
His profile on the Dr. Pepper contest website stated his case for tuition help.
"All of the gear needed and schooling cost tens of thousands," he said on the website. "Help me save lives. One day, I could be saving yours."
Several weeks after he submitted the video, Waring was invited to the Pac-12 championship game to compete for $100,000. The phone call came while he was listening to a song about having bad luck in life.
The contest covered his travel expenses to and from California.
Waring advanced to the contest finals by hitting 12 targets in a preliminary competition on Thursday.