Scholarship Recipients

In recent letters and phone conversations, each young woman has expressed enormous gratitude for our financial assistance. You might enjoy these reports from some of our 2016 scholarship recipients who just began their freshman year.

Guadalupe Ibanez (Healdsburg) is attending Sacramento State and is struck by the huge difference between high school and college.  “You have to make your own decisions because your parents are not going to tell you what’s right and what’s wrong.”  Her favorite class is Human Development because she enjoys learning about genetic and environmental factors that influence child development.  She writes, “Thank you for supporting me in my future education.  I am very honored to be the recipient of this award.  I am going to give my best every single day at Sacramento State to become a teacher.  Thank you for believing in me, and also for the financial support.  Have no doubt that I will give my heart and more to make you proud of me, and make me worthy of this scholarship.”

Karsyn Stewart’s (Cloverdale) two favorite classes at UC San Diego are “Comparative Politics” and a writing class based on articulating one’s personal political beliefs – particularly relevant during this election year.  She is amazed by the diversity of the student body and reports she is “absolutely loving it!”   She writes, “Your organization does so much to open doors for young women like myself.  I cannot thank you enough for awarding me this scholarship.  It is allowing me to accomplish my dream of completing college.”

Maria Herrera (Healdsburg) is enjoying her “Criminal Justice” class at Sacramento State where she intends to major in Social Services.  She says it is a very active campus and is already taking advantage of the many opportunities to join clubs and get involved.  She writes, “thank you so much for investing in my dreams to further my education.”

Maria Espinoza Nieto (Healdsburg) is studying art and interior design at Sacramento State so that she can become an entrepreneur, earn a Master’s degree in Fine Arts and become a professor.  She writes that, without assistance, “I would never have had the opportunity to go to a university.  I give you my word that I will make you feel very proud.  I’m still so impressed that I was awarded this tremendous scholarship and this makes me feel so special and lucky.  It is very beautiful to see how there are still so many wonderful people who care and help students with dreams similar to mine.”

Kenia Alba (Windsor) is a theater major at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She is taking several theater classes as well as costume construction.  She lives in a triple and says she “got really lucky” with her roommates.  She is “over” the campus dining hall already and has found a café that serves salads – but “you can only eat salad so many days in a row”– so she and her roommates just stocked up on groceries.  She writes, “I am not completely sure that there is anything I could say which would actually thank you as much as I wish I could.  Over the summer, the process of figuring out my budget for the school year and deciding which loans were actually necessary to take, was made so much easier because I knew that I would have the extra $3,000 for the year.  And that made it less stressful – well as not stressful as a situation where you are purposely putting yourself in debt can be – nevertheless, it eased my worries.”


Healdsburg AAUW leaders with the four Healdsburg High School grads who received college scholarships from our Fund in 2016. L to R: Kay Kohler of AAUW, Guadalupe Lopez, Guadalupe Ibanez, Maria Herrera, Maria Espinoza Nieto and Andi Michelsen, Scholarship Chair for Healdsburg AAUW.