Two Florida Teens Named Lakhani Scholars: Earning National College Coaching Scholarship

Courtesy: Lakhani Coaching Program/ Cision PR Web. Left to right Hayley McCombs and Rachel Nacarino

The globally renowned Lakhani Coaching program has released their annual scholarship recipient list and among the three winners—two are from South Florida.

Hayley McCombs of Pompano Beach and Rachel Nacarino of Miami will receive three years of elite one-on-one coaching amounting to $10,000 worth of SAT/ACT prep, college essay coaching, financial aid application guidance, mentorship, and more.

The highly competitive scholarship program targets low-income students who excel in the classroom and demonstrate a deep passion for academic success beyond high school.

“We have a goal of serving at least 100 students – 50% of our roster – on full scholarship by 2025, and the expansion has officially begun. We know there is a wealth gap; that many well-deserving and highly intelligent and community-minded students simply don’t have the means to hire a college admissions coach, so we are doing what we can to help as many as possible,” said Founder and CEO Hafeez Lakhani.

This year’s recipients triple the number of recipients over the past two years. They are emblematic of the highly selective and expanding admissions process to assist more students in need through the Lakhani Coaching program. 

The scholarship was recently awarded 501(c)(3) nonprofit status and is only available to current sophomores in high school and residents of the U.S.

As for the recipients—

Hayley McCombs: Pompano, FL

Hayley is one of nine children and an active caretaker for six of her younger siblings. Coming from such a large family and the home of a single earning guardian, finances are not the easiest thing to come by. In her spare time during the summer months, Hayley cleans pools to help at home. She also launched her own cosmetic business and has amassed over 37,000 followers on Instagram— quite the entrepreneur. Hayley is also active in the community, and at her school, she takes part in track and field and is President of the school’s Key Club. Her career aspiration is to become a Neurosurgeon.

Rachel Nacarino: Miami, FL

Rachel tragically lost her father to a battle with COVID-19 in 2020, and her mother works at a restaurant cleaning. As a result, Rachel has taken her education into her own hands and founded Uli Smiles, an organization dedicated to helping English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) system students across three schools in the Miami area. As an immigrant from Peru in 2016, Rachel knows all too well the trials and tribulations of adapting to the English language and is a graduate of the ESOL program herself. She is involved in school clubs and sports and hopes to become an engineer.

Program Details and Schedule

Lakhani Scholars receive a scholarship covering a total of 35 hours of coaching during their last three years of high school totaling $10,000: The breakdown of the coaching is divided into 11 hours of High School Career Coaching (including High School Character Coaching and College Admissions Coaching) and 24 hours of high-stakes SAT or ACT test Coaching. 

The full suite of services is designed to unlock recipients’ educational aspirations, “ensuring that they craft a fulfilling high school career and achieve their full potential in the college admissions process,” according to the scholarship website.  

Sophomore year

Applications due: May 1

Application decisions: June 15

High School Career Coaching (1 hour): Early July

Junior year    

High School Career Coaching (1 hour): Early September

Preliminary college list development (1 hour): Early September

High School Career Coaching (1 hour): Early January

SAT or ACT Coaching (8 weeks, 2x per week, 1.5 hour sessions): Winter/Spring

Post-junior summer

College essay topic development (2x, 30 minute sessions): July

College essay editing (3x, 1 hour sessions): August  

Senior year

High School Career Coaching (1 hour): Early September

College list finalization (1 hour): Mid September

Application review (1 hour): Early October

Contributions to Lakhani Scholars are 100% tax deductible and can include corporate, foundation, individual or stock donations. To learn more about the program, including how to donate, visit

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