A Celebration of Student Scholarships

By Scott Craig   |   June 4, 2024
Seven incoming Westmont students won college scholarships (courtesy photo)

Westmont was well represented at an annual scholarship awards celebration on May 20 at the UC Santa Barbara Multicultural Center. Seven future Westmont students were honored with $5,000 scholarships through the Program for Effective Access to College (PEAC). Six of the students plan on taking advantage of Westmont’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) fast-track program, earning two degrees in four-and-a-half years, while one will major in computer science.

ABSN student Gabriela Rico (’24) of Goleta was the keynote speaker of the evening, which featured scholarship recipients and their families, the Santa Barbara Unified School District leadership team, and members of the Bower Foundation, REACH, Mission Scholars and community donors.

“Witnessing the community partnerships coming together to support college accessibility for students pursuing higher education is inspiring and rewarding,” says Araceli Espinoza, assistant director of Westmont admissions. “This event is a reminder of the importance of community building to enhance scholarship and college access opportunities.”

The goal of PEAC is to increase the high school and college graduation rate of low-income, historically underrepresented students in SBUSD. Funds are administered through the Santa Barbara Education Foundation.

The most meaningful part of this night is seeing students receive scholarships that will forever change their lives and seeing their family’s faces light up when they see them being honored on stage,” says Brenda Tirado, senior admissions counselor for transfer and international students. “I’ve been able to work with many of these incredible students on a personal level for the last year, learning about their dreams and aspirations.”


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