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UA Hispanic Alumni Club to Honor Distinguished Students
Four UA graduating students will be recognized for their academic excellence during the UA Hispanic Alumni Celebration of Excellence Luncheon on April 26.
Four University of Arizona graduating students will be recognized for their academic excellence during the University of Arizona Hispanic Alumni Celebration of Excellence Luncheon on April 26.
The UA Hispanic Alumni club is celebrating its 30th anniversary during the annual luncheon held to honor its mission of providing financial and mentoring support – including help in developing networks with alumni and supporters in the professional and business community – for qualified and deserving students.
The UAHA club was founded in 1982 to promote academic excellence among Hispanic students at the University, and its members are accomplished Hispanic graduates and former students of the UA. Associate memberships are available to non-Hispanic UA graduates, former students and others who support the goals of the organization.
In the beginning, to gather funds to provide financial support for students, club members humbly sold green corn tamales. To date, the club has awarded more than 2,000 scholarships to UA students for a total of nearly $5.3 million.
During this year's celebration, UAHA will honor the academic accomplishments of Arturo Rodriguez, Natalie Nevárez, Carolina Luque and Elise F. Oviedo. They beat out 45 other UA student applicants for the honor.
"When considering applicants for the award, we not only look at academics, we look at the whole student and how the student's goals and activities meet with the mission of the UAHA. We want to know, for instance, if they engage in giving back to their community, which includes the UA and greater community," said UA alumnus Lorenzo Chavez, chair of the UAHA awards and nominations committee.
Rodriguez and Nevarez will be honored as UAHA's 2012 Outstanding Seniors.
Luque and Oviedo will be awarded as UAHA's 2012 Outstanding Graduates/Professional Students.
Rodriguez is a graduating senior and a Gates Millennium Scholar, majoring in Mexican American studies and Spanish. He will continue his education at the UA pursuing a master's degree in language, reading and culture.
Nevárez is a graduating senior majoring in psychology and communications. She has participated in various research projects and has been published in the Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary and Applied. She also was recognized with the Top Four Paper Award at the 2011 National Communication Conference. She will pursue a doctorate in behavioral neuroscience at the University of Michigan in the fall.
Luque will be receiving a master's degree in higher education. She has served as an Arizona Assurance mentor and is director of community outreach for Scholarships A-Z, a non-profit organization that provides educational resources to high school and college students, regardless of immigration status. Upon graduation, she plans to attend law school and focus on immigration law.
Oviedo is a graduating law student who has been involved in the Latino Law Student Association and participated in the UA College of Law Immigration Clinic. Upon passing the bar exam, she plans to continue to serve the Hispanic community in the public and private sectors.
In addition to honoring students, this year's celebration features a presentation by Nolan Cabrera, UA College of Education assistant professor of educational policy studies and practice. His presentation will examine the decline in Latino males entering and completing college and its impact on society.