College Week 2020: Meet The Scholars!

We are excited to announce College Week 2020, where you’ll meet some of our current and former scholarship recipients attending colleges and universities across the country. Since 1999, JBBBSLA has awarded over $2 million in scholarships to high school graduates, allowing them to achieve their higher educational goals. Click here to find out more about our scholarship program. 

To close out College Week, JBBBSLA and Camp Bob Waldorf invite you to join us for a special Virtual College Student Panel via Zoom on Sunday, October 25 at 2 pm PT. Hear from current students from different colleges and universities, learn about their college experiences, and get advice on how to navigate college. You’ll also find out more about our scholarships and College Guidance Program, which are incredible benefits available to JBBBSLA Littles and CBW campers!

Now let’s introduce you to some of our outstanding current scholars! [To meet our former scholars, click here.] 

Danica Buckner
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient/Lead Student Ambassador
CSU Fullerton

Why was going to college important to you?

Attending college is extremely important for me so that I could have the tools to compete in today’s job world and to expand my knowledge of new unexplored concepts. I want to gain the tools to build generational wealth and support for my family. Lastly, I want to set a positive example for my younger relatives and those that look up to me.

What are you up to in college?

I am currently an administrative intern at Keck Hospital of USC, where I aide in ensuring a positive and healthy experience for surgical patients. In addition, I participate in biological studies that seek to explore unknown or unprecedented explorations of ecology and genetics.

Natalie Carmona
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient
Moorpark College

Why was going to college important to you?

College is very important not only for me but also for my family. I would be the first generation in my family to get a bachelor’s degree and hopefully get my PhD as well.

What are you up to in college?

I’m on the softball team at Moorpark College. I am currently in my second year. I’m completing my AS in Political Sciences and hope to transfer to UCLA for medical school.

Daniela Cohen
JBBBSLA Scholarship/Lead Student Ambassador
CSUN

Why was going to college important to you?

Going to college is important to me because it allows me to continue my education, which will lead to a better future.

What are you up to in college?

I’m currently a Business major, and I’m doing an internship at a real estate office. In my free time, I enjoy going on hikes.

Michelle Estrada
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient
San Francisco State University

Why was going to college important to you?

College is important to me because I want to help my community reach higher education and strengthen that path for future students like my little sister.

What are you up to in college?

I just started SFSU this fall, and I am majoring in general biology.

Jonathan Hale
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient/Lead Student Ambassador
UC Davis

Why was going to college important to you?

Going to college is important to me because knowledge is power, and I would like to create a change in the world.

What are you up to in college?

I started my first year at UC Davis, and I am majoring in Aerospace Engineering.

Ori Hamburg
JBBBSLA Scholarship Recipient/Lead Student Ambassador
Art Institute of Chicago

Why was going to college important to you?

It’s given me an opportunity to explore my interests and pursue a career that excites me.

What are you up to in college?

Apart from sculpture, figurative and abstract art, I work in clay, metal, and wood. I draw too.

DAsianae Harris
Rising Leaders Scholarship Recipient
Hampton University

Why was going to college important to you?

Going to college was so important to me because for one people don’t expect it and two because I need this for me. I need not only to prove to myself that I can do this but I need to prove that minorities are not the minority. We are the future.

What are you up to in college?

My major is Kinesiology with a minor in Leadership Studies. I am currently in the honors program and an executive board member. I am also an SGA Senator representing for the freshman class. And last but not least, I am also apart of a Leadership Committee. And I volunteer at my church.

Alexa Kendell
JBBBSLA Scholarship Recipient
UC Davis

Why was going to college important to you?

Going to college was important to me because of the path in life I hope to follow. Wanting to attend law school someday, I wanted to build a strong foundation of critical analysis and writing skills. Furthermore, I think it helps me grow as a person. Having this easy shift between childhood and adulthood has really helped me learn what it means to be an adult and I think will prepare me for adulthood.

What are you up to in college?

I am currently double majoring in Philosophy and Political Science. I am the UC Davis Pre Law Society’s Conference Internal Director, a commissioner for the Internal Affairs Commission, and an Executive Staffer for the Executive Office for Law and Legal Research. Furthermore, I just attained a job at my school’s bookstore! I have a lot on my plate, but my first year in school truly prepared me in regard to organizing my time and balancing school and extracurriculars.

Jeremy Kirksey
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient
UCLA

Why was going to college important to you?

Attending a four-year university carries so much power for myself and the work that I put in to be a college student right out of high school. Pursuing my Bachelor’s degree and hopefully my M.D. in the future is so important for breaking glass ceilings that prevented generations before me from pursuing higher education.

What are you up to in college?

I am currently about to begin my senior year at UCLA for my B.S. in Biology with a Minor in African-American Studies. I am a Brother of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, a Campus Liaison for Afro-Latinx Connection, and the Executive Secretary for the National Panhellenic Council (NPHC) at UCLA.

Sean Lavi
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient
UCLA

Why was going to college important to you?

Going to college was important to me because I wanted to meet and interact with individuals from different backgrounds.

What are you up to in college?

I currently transferred to UCLA THIS FALL. SUPER DUPER EXCITED!

Katya Pronichenko
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient
Dartmouth College

Why was going to college important to you?

College is important to me because it gives me the opportunity to learn and further my goals of helping protect the planet and the people on it. In school, I am given opportunities to work with other advocates and experts on social justice issues. College also helped me find friends that share the same goals as me.

What are you up to in college?

At Dartmouth, I am studying Environmental Studies and Earth Science and I seek to work with indigenous people close to the land in order to adopt more sustainable legislation and healthy land usage practices. I am a firm believer that understanding endemic plant species and their uses can help with environmental projects that will help adopt a more sustainable lifestyle for me and others. I have already started this process of spreading knowledge of incorporating environmental stewardship by writing and publishing my book Eco Winners which is a guide to sustainable activism and a compilation of the stories of various environmental leaders.

Sophia Roger
JBBBSLA Scholarship Recipient
San Francisco State University

Why was going to college important to you?

College is a must when it came to learning what I wanted to pursue and who I was outside of my home. I wanted to surround myself with other students who shared the similar passions of film that were difficult to find within K-12. Asking someone to be in your movie was always a groaning struggle from other kids before heading to university, but you find so many people willing to support your art when you find the right place.

What are you up to in college?

I am currently at SFSU studying both Cinema and Broadcast Electronic Communication Arts, hoping to become a television editor. I am President of the Delta Kappa Alpha Cinematic Arts Fraternity on campus this year.

Matthew Vasquez
Arnold S. Nelson Scholarship Recipient
CSU Fullerton

Why was going to college important to you?

College is important because it’s a way to better myself as a person.

What are you up to in college?

Throughout my years in college, I have been the President of the Brotherhood collective, a Peer mentor for the office of First-Year Experience, and studied abroad in three different locations.

Melody Wachtel
JBBBSLA Scholarship Recipient
Cal Lutheran

Why was going to college important to you?

Going to college was important to me because it has given me the chance to branch out on my interests and passions to find the right career choice for me. I have been able to take many classes to find the right fit for me major wise and I have happily settled upon Marketing Communications. It came as an epiphany for me because I was thinking what can I do with my outgoing personality as well as my creative mind and artistic background. It also has given me the chance to meet new people and truly begin to see what being away from home is like and being independent, on my own. I have been able to be a part of so many wonderful communities within my school and meet so many new people and make such great friends that I believe will be in my life forever.

What are you up to in college?

I am majoring in Marketing Communications, currently trying to figure out what route within the major I want to take. I am in student government on campus as well as Hillel, the Jewish club. I do community service through Hillel, my synagogue, as well as have done it through Teen Talk. I also am working part time at Starbucks near my school and am going to celebrate one year there soon.

Interested in learning more about JBBBSLA’s Scholarship Program? Visit our website or contact Carina Garcia, Director of Scholarship and Alumni Programs, at cgarcia@jbbbsla.org.

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