Three from Pace earn 5-year scholarships through migrant assistance program - Brownsville Herald: Local News

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Three from Pace earn 5-year scholarships through migrant assistance program

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2019 10:15 am

Three seniors at Pace Early College High School have won five-year scholarships to St. Edwards University in Austin through the College Assistance Migrant Program based on high grade point averages and their scores on the SAT and ACT college entrance examinations.

All three, Osiel Mendoza, David De Leon and Genesis Vazquez, have spent their high school years moving back and forth with their families between farm fields in Minnesota and Florida and the classroom rigor of the Brownsville Independent School District. Each will now become a first-generation college student.

"We have help everywhere," Vazquez said of the program. Most migrant students leave school one or two weeks early in the spring to get to their jobs up north and return to the Rio Grande Valley one or two weeks after school has started in the fall. That makes for a lot of catching up, the students said.

"Migrant students for the most part are very hard-working students. They learn it from their parents working 15 and 16-hour shifts -- no weekends," said Juanie Garcia, the migrant teacher at Pace who helped guide the three successful applications.

Pace students learn as juniors how to look for scholarships. The key to success is early submission of paperwork, Garcia said. Seniors are required to apply for 15 scholarships.

St. Edwards is the only university in the country that provides five-year scholarships through the CAMP program, so making an application there was a priority, she said. Extra-curricular activities, the essay that accompanies an application and letters of recommendation from teachers were also factors. Only 35 slots are available nationwide.

"We bring in representatives of CAMP at St. Edwards, UTRGV, Michigan State, the University of Texas-El Paso" and others, said Letty Barrientes, BISD migrant program coordinator.

CAMP is funded by the U.S. Department of Education and made available through grants at the colleges and universities that participate.

De Leon and Vazquez found out about the program when they were freshmen, but Mendoza not until his senior year this year. Still he managed to catch up through working in the migrant lab over his lunch hour and in other spare time.

Two years ago DeLeon participated in a program called MUSE, or Migrant University Summer Experience, a six-week summer residential program at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley in Edinburg. His family travels to Minnesota in the summers so he had to make adjustments to his schedule of caring for his younger brother and their cousins while away from the Valley.

At Pace "the migrant lab has the tools we need to catch up," he said.

For her part, Vazquez said she has been able to stay caught up on school work. Currently she works two sales jobs at Sunrise Mall after school. Her goal is to obtain a bachelor's degree in business management, become an entrepreneur and open her own business as a cosmetologist.

"Being a migrant is hard," Mendoza said, referring to 12-hour work days caring for his siblings and preparing food for when his parents get home from the fields. He had this advice for all migrant students:

"If you want to accomplish your goals, always remember everything is hard but not impossible.... Always have high expectations and never give up."

glong@brownsvilleherald.com

Follow us on Facebook

Pet Central

pets

Having a pet is a lot of responsibility, and we’ll help by giving you lots of tips and tricks! More >>

Fitness

Fitness

Our fitness articles will help teach you how to work out with gym- and home-based exercises. More >>

Crosswords

Crosswords

Enjoy the crosswords challenge in our free daily puzzles, from the harder Sunday crossword to the quicker daily. More >>

Sudoku

Sudoku

Every Sudoku has a unique solution that can be reached logically. Enter numbers into the blank spaces so that each row, column and 3x3 box contains the numbers 1 to 9. More >>




Online Features

Pet Central

pets

Having a pet is a lot of responsibility, and we’ll help by giving you lots of tips and tricks! More >>

Fitness

Fitness

Our fitness articles will help teach you how to work out with gym- and home-based exercises. More >>

Crosswords

Crosswords

Enjoy the crosswords challenge in our free daily puzzles, from the harder Sunday crossword to the quicker daily. More >>

Sudoku

Sudoku

Every Sudoku has a unique solution that can be reached logically. Enter numbers into the blank spaces so that each row, column and 3x3 box contains the numbers 1 to 9. More >>