Students Scholarship Recipients
Share their stories and goals for the future!
Paulina Marin is a rising college freshman from Riverdale, CA. As a first-generation student, Paulina is a self-aware, passionate, and resilient individual who has had to quickly adjust and learn to navigate an entirely new environment. Moving to the United States from Mexico, as a young girl, she had to overcome many obstacles including acquiring a new language. Yet, she has been able to face these challenges and thrive academically and personally. She has been an active and persistent individual in her community and has been able to prioritize her academics while doing so. During her high school years, she participated in various sports, clubs, and volunteer opportunities such as Student Site Council and WASC, as well as being an active theatre performer. Paulina hopes to pursue a higher education to achieve her career goals and serve as an advocate and inspiration for others to continue to pursue her dreams.
Maria G. Lemus is a first-generation college student attending Reedley College. At an early age, she and her family migrated from Mexico to the Central Valley in hopes of greater opportunities. Although this experience gave her more opportunities, it also brought unforeseen challenges and adversities tied to her identity as a first-generation student. These experiences have instilled in Maria a sense of courage and diligence to view education as a vehicle to reach academic success. Her personal narrative and a strong sense of perseverance has enabled her to prevail within the educational setting. Maria is currently taking sociology courses but hopes to transfer to Fresno State to obtain a degree in social work. During her time at Reedley College, she has achieved academic and professional development opportunities, such as being part of the honors program and partaking in various fellowship and volunteer opportunities. Maria is a promising and bright individual, who despite her challenges she has remained hopeful.
Karen Martinez is a rising first-generation college student from Bakersfield, CA. At the young of four, Karen and her family decided to migrate from Manzanillo, Mexico to the US envisioning a more prosperous life. Since an early age, Karen has felt enthusiastic about education and has transformed the challenges and obstacles in her journey as a catalyst to continue to empower her to pursue her goals. During her high school years, Karen enrolled in several AP courses and academic programs offered at her local university campus to further challenge herself. She was also involved in several extracurricular activities, such as serving as ASB President, Houchin Blood Drive ambassador, joining track and cross country teams, as well as volunteering for local nonprofits in her community. She plans to pursue a degree in biomedical engineering in hopes of creating a positive impact on individuals’ lives. Karen is an enthusiastic and resilient individual who is driven by her goals and desire to make a lasting impact in her community.
Ashley Herrera-Velasco is a first-generation college student pursuing a degree in kinesiology at Fresno State. She grew up in Orange Cove and has learned the value of hard work, dedication, and leadership through being involved in sports as a youth and eventually working in the fields that surrounded her hometown. Since an early age, she has felt passionate about the field of physical therapy and working with others. To follow this passion, Ashley plans to pursue a master’s degree and then a doctorate degree. After accomplishing her academic goals, she hopes to give back by establishing a physical therapy clinic that can provide the community the support they need. She is a dedicated and driven individual who is passionate about her educational goals and investing in her community to help disadvantage groups.
Kenia Servillon is a rising college freshman from the rural and agriculture-based community of Mendota, CA. At a young age, Kenia and her family moved from El Salvador to the United States. Although this experience came with many difficulties, it fostered within her the drive and resiliency necessary to overcome these challenges and embrace every opportunity available to her. Throughout her high school career she flourished academically while taking both AP classes and college courses at West Hills Community College. She also spent her time volunteering for Link Crew, and at her local health clinic. These unique experiences have served as a reminder of the importance of higher education and pursuing one’s passions. She aspires to pursue a career in school counseling to empower youth. One day she also hopes to establish a program dedicated to serve individuals in the community of Mendota to learn English and participate in CTE programs.
Jennifer Gordillo-Herrera is a rising first-year college student from the rural community of Reedley, CA. Since a young age, Jennifer’s family values and sense of tenacity have served as compelling factors in shaping her work ethic and perseverance in both athletics and academics. She intends to study psychology to learn more about the complexities of human behavior and interactions. Throughout her high school years, she was involved in several volunteer experiences that further taught her the importance of helping others and investing in her community. She volunteered as a teacher’s assistant and spent her weekdays empowering youth. Jennifer also spent part of her school days assisting nurses in her local retirement home. In addition, Jennifer has proven to be a stellar athlete, being a part of her school’s varsity soccer team for four years, has allowed her to grow as a leader and serve as a support system for her other teammates. Moreover, further reflecting on her journey, Jennifer has been able to balance her volunteer, athletic, and academic responsibilities while simultaneously excelling in these areas. Jennifer is a dedicated and passionate individual whose hopes of obtaining a higher education are fueled by the desire to make her parents and herself proud.
Gabriela Negrete is a first-year college student from Mendota, CA. Fueled by a compelling sense of motivation, Gabriela has been a part of various extracurricular activities throughout her high school career, such as, FFA (Future Farmers of America) , NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), as well as, being a part of her high school band. She also enrolled in West Hills Community College to take college courses as a high school student. Aside from this, she also dedicated numerous hours to volunteering at her local medical center. These experiences have instilled within her a strong passion for helping others and advocating for the importance of mental health awareness. In the future, she hopes to continue her education at a community college and then transfer to a four-year university, where she hopes to pursue a degree in the medical field, such as a medical assistant or a registered nurse.
Denise Alonso is from the rural and agricultural-based community of Mendota, CA. Despite growing up in a place with little educational opportunities she has managed to succeed academically. During her high school years she enrolled in community college courses to obtain her associate’s degree earlier. Since an early age, she was intrigued by the fields of criminology and psychology. She plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in psychology to further learn how she can help with crime recidivism in her community. In addition, she hopes to venture in her own interests of nature and ocean life by pursuing a double-major in marine biology. Throughout her high school career, Denise has been involved in a number of activities and volunteer opportunities including being a volleyball statistics keeper and lending a hand at school events and clothing drives to help her community. She also served as secretary for her senior class and was a member of the FFA (Future Farmers of America) chapter at her high school. Denise is strongly motivated to accomplish her goals, continue to make a profound and lasting impact on her community, and make her family proud.
Priscilla Valdez is a first-year college student who grew up in Mendota, CA, a rural town in the heart of the Central Valley known for its agricultural prosperity. She is a motivated and driven individual who has always envisioned herself attending a university and pursuing a career in education. She anticipates majoring in liberal studies to eventually become an elementary teacher. She loves working with youth and hopes to create a fulfilling and positive learning experience for her future students. Throughout her high school years she has proved to be a dedicated student and athlete, thriving within the classroom and on the basketball court. She anticipates using her strong work ethic, resiliency and teamwork skills to succeed in her college journey.
Caleb is a rising first-year college student from the rural community of Riverdale, CA. Since an early age he has recognized the significance of succeeding academically and investing in his education. During high school years, he become involved in several extracurricular activities, such as, drama club, robotics, Cancer Awareness, AVID, serving as secretary for CSF, and President of his senior class among other opportunities. Outside of school, he has dedicated his time to help his local church by serving as a catechism teacher for youth. In addition, Caleb is passionate about education and hopes to pursue a college degree in applied mathematics. For Caleb, pursuing a higher education not only means he will achieve his personal goals, but also give back to his family.
If your organization or Business believe in our mission please donate to our Scholarship Fund. It would make a difference in a students life.
We are looking to raise $15,000 for The 2021-2022 Scholarships. All donations are tax deductible.