Western Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel
WESTOP CENCAL SCHOLARSHIP
- 2019/2020 RECIPIENTS -
"My name is Tano Anthony Alvarado and I’ve been a TRIO member for about 2 years I started early as a junior and stayed with them until I graduated. I will be attending CSU Fresno in the fall of 2020 where I will be majoring in the field of Biology. After that I plan on applying to Medical school to get my M.D. and become a cardiothoracic surgeon." - Tano
Anesti Vega has been part of the TRIO Program at College of the Sequoias for 1 year. Anesti applied and was recently accepted to the Florida Institute of Technology where he will start the Oceanography program in Fall 2020. As a first-generation student, Anesti carries his passion for exploring Earth’s last frontier, the oceans, and shares that passion with everyone. He is a SCUBA instructor with over 10 years experience in participating and leading ocean science initiatives and cleanups. He was awarded Elite Instructor for 2018 by PADI and was a finalist for Environmental Educator of the Year for 2019 by California AEOE. As an Army combat veteran, Anesti serves as Executive Director of USX, a nonprofit scientific research agency that connects military veterans with STEM field research initiatives in remote/austere environments where data is desperately needed, but difficult to acquire. He also serves as SCUBA Council Chair for Diversity in Aquatics, where he focuses on increasing safety, education, and accessibility to SCUBA and ocean exploration for marginalized and under-represented communities. Once Anesti graduates from Florida Tech, he plans on pursuing graduate level degrees at MIT and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and further his career as an ocean science communicator through his skills in digital and social media, with a focus on educating and inspiring the current and future generations about the oceans and how to protect them. His website is www.anestivega.com and shares content on Instagram at @anestivega.
"My name is Morgan Kissinger, I have been a part of the TRIO community for one year now. I first joined TRIO as a transfer student to Cal State Monterey Bay from a community college, Gavilan College. I am a Psychology major and Humanities and Communication minor attending Cal State Monterey Bay. I am planning to complete my bachelor's in the spring of 21' and attend a doctorate program in the fall of 21' where I will work towards my Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. Since attending college, I have consistently remained on the Dean's List for all four years of my educational career." - Morgan
"My name is Alexis Felix and I have been a TRIO participant since 2018 as an incoming Transfer Student studying Psychology at California State University, Monterey Bay. I transferred from San Joaquin Delta College after attaining my Associates Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. With the support of TRIO, I have been able to follow my dreams of becoming a counselor and will be studying Counseling in the Fall at Sonoma State University. With this particular program, I will be earning my Pupil Personnel Services Credential, allowing me to serve as a high school and college counselor. As a first-generation and low-income college student, I am excited to support and empower all students throughout their educational journey. My goal is to attain my Ph.D. and return to my hometown, Stockton, California to be a counselor at the high school and community college I once attended. I am a strong advocate for Transfer students and I want to bring light to the opportunities available and inspire them to achieve their goals. My desire to serve as a high school counselor developed from my experience in volunteering at Seaside high school during my undergraduate. It was here that I realized just how much of an impact you can make on young students because it's such a pivotal moment in their lives. My plan is to make a difference in my community and guide students to the best of my ability.
I grew a passion for helping students due to my own struggle growing up without support. The compassion I grew for myself through the process of finding my path, is the compassion I now have for students. I would describe myself as a resilient individual, as Sonoma State will be the fourth college I will finish. I started out my educational career becoming a Dental Assistant and realized it wasn't the path for me. I want to use my experience to show students that it's okay to start over and that no one knows what they want to be for the rest of their life at the age of 18. My setbacks brought me growth and made me into the person I am today.
Throughout my undergraduate journey, I worked as a Transfer Peer Mentor serving students at three different organizations on campus, which included; TRIO, Transfer Student Success Center, and CSUMB's Undergraduate Research Opportunity Center. I am a recipient of Sonoma State University's Graduate Equity Fellowship, California State University, Monterey Bay's Outstanding Future Alumni Award, Dean's list from every college attended, and placed on honor roll throughout my college career." - Alexis
"I grew up in Soledad all throughout my life. My parents are immigrants from El Salvador and came to work as agricultural workers in California to provide better living opportunities for themselves and my siblings. I have been an active participant in Upward Bound since my Sophomore year of high school. I decided to join the program because I needed access to additional educational resources and a supportive community that encouraged me to put my full effort into everything I do. Now that I graduated from Soledad High School last June, I plan to attend the University of California, Berkeley to major in Chemical Engineering for the Fall of 2020. My long-term goal is to continue being a self-driven person in any new chapter of my life and utilize the resources and knowledge I obtain to provide educational opportunities for less-privileged students throughout the Salinas Valley such as mentorship and eventually scholarships. Throughout high school, I was involved in the Mathematics, Engineering, Science, and Achievement (MESA) club, where I took 1st place at the Regional competition for creativity and design for the prosthetic arm project. I founded and was President of the Visionary Club at my high school with the purpose of creating community projects. Within that same club, me and my officers were able to raise over $1,000 for our main project of wanting to create a mural on-campus. I was a founding member of the Soledad Youth Council to help advocate student voices and solutions to problems that local youth face during the city council and school board meetings. I was also a member of my high school’s Track & Field and Cross-Country team for about two years each." - Jonathan
"My name is Jasmine Vu and I am from San Jose, California. I graduated from Yerba Buena High School and have been honored to be in Trio Upward Bound for two years. I will soon attend the University of California-Irvine to study biological sciences and aspire to earn a job in the medical field to help those in my community. I graduated summa cum laude and earned these awards throughout my high school experience: Ap scholar, honor roll, coach’s award for cross-country, most improved for cross-country, and most improved for swimming and diving. I participated and volunteered in multiple clubs. I co-founded my school’s Running Club and held positions as club event coordinator and club treasurer."