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2015 Youth Awards – Grants for College

The Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards run annually and honor young Latino leaders with grants for their college education or to fund a community service effort.

The Youth Awards program is presented by the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and their sponsors. Latino high school seniors will have the opportunity to apply. If selected, the students will be honored during 10 regional ceremonies with an audience of influential community leaders, receive grants for their education or for an idea or project to impact their communities, and funneled into the award-winning LOFT (Latinos On Fast Track) program as they attend college and enter their careers.

The 2015 online application is available until October 15 and will be open to rising seniors (Students graduating in the Spring of 2016) who maintain an un-weighted 3.0 GPA. Award categories include, but are not limited to: Business & Entrepreneurship, Community Service, Education, Engineering & Mathematics, Healthcare & Science, Innovation & Technology and Sports & Fitness. More categories are added each year and are subject to change without notice.

Three recipients are selected for each category (Gold, Silver and Bronze Medallion) in each of the regions. The Awards are divided into eleven different regions across the country: Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Phoenix, Rio Grande Valley, San Jose and Washington DC. Students may apply to as many categories as they wish but only within one region.

Special award ceremonies are held at local colleges and universities. We invite local business, education, and community leaders to pay tribute to your accomplishments. If selected, attendance to the regional ceremony is absolutely mandatory. Travel to the regional ceremony will be at the recipient’s expense.

All recipients are also eligible to be selected as a National recipient. National recipients receive a laptop computer, and an all-expense paid trip to be recognized at the National Youth Awards ceremony. More information on the National Youth Awards will be posted on our website and be mentioned during all regional ceremonies.


Scholarship – QuestBridge National College Match

The QuestBridge National College Match is a college and scholarship application process that helps outstanding low-income high school seniors gain admission and full four-year scholarships to the nation’s most selective colleges.

If you are a student who has achieved academic excellence in the face of economic challenges, we encourage you to apply to the National College Match. QuestBridge’s partner colleges offer generous financial aid packages that cover 100% of demonstrated financial need, making them very affordable for low-income students.

Eligibility: In order to be eligible to apply for the National College Match in the fall of 2015, applicants must graduate from high school during or before the summer of 2016 and plan to enroll as a freshman in college in the fall of 2016.

The QuestBridge National College Match is open to all:

  • U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents
  • Students, regardless of citizenship, currently attending high school in the United States

Selection Criteria: QuestBridge takes all of the following factors into account when evaluating an application for the National College Match:

  1. Academic Achievement
  2. Financial Qualifications
  3. Personal Circumstances

Academic Achievement: We seek students who have demonstrated a level of academic achievement that meets or exceeds the admissions standards of our partner colleges. The academic characteristics below are based on profiles of Finalists from previous years, and are not strict requirements or cut-offs:

Grades and rigor of high school curriculum: Primarily A’s in the most challenging courses available (usually including Honors, AP, and/or IB level courses.)
Class rank: Top 5-10% of your graduating class.
Standardized test scores: SAT (CR+M) scores above 1250; ACT composite score above 27. We also recommend submitting any AP, IB, or SAT Subject Test scores.  Review the standardized testing requirements for each partner college.
We also look for evidence of strong writing ability, intellectual spark, and determination through essays and teacher/counselor recommendations.

Financial Qualifications: College Match Finalists typically come from households earning less than $60,000 annually for a family of four, and often less than $50,000. This is not a strict cut-off and we encourage students who feel they have faced significant financial hardship to review these financial details carefully to see if they may qualify.

Personal Circumstances: We also take the following factors into account when reviewing applications:

  • Parents’ level of education: Many past award recipients have been among the first generation in their family to attend a four-year college.
  • Extenuating circumstances: For example, if students have jobs to help their parents pay the bills, or spend much time out of school caring for siblings if their parents are absent or at work.
  • Extracurricular achievements: Accomplishments and leadership roles in extracurricular and community activities

See the official QuestBridge Scholarship Site for more further details on requirements, eligibility, and application.

Executive Action Guide

I just spoke to the most motivated and tenacious undergraduate student seeking to go to law school. This student is not only incredibly intelligent, well rounded, and community-oriented, but also brave. This student is a DACA student. I was contacted because, having gone to law school myself, I am have insights into many of the do’s and dont’s about the admissions’ process and what types of funding are available once you are admitted.

But more importantly, the conversation reminded me of why I do the pro-bono work that I do, why I decided to go back to school, and why I want to focus on immigration law and policies. The conversation inevitably turned to the difficulty in finding affordable legal representation for the undocumented and the importance of attorneys in doing their part to protect the rights of the most vulnerable. I realized in this conversation that although I may not single-handedly be able to solve every immigration problem, I can still contribute to possible solutions through legal representation and scholarly work. Although this student called seeking my help, they actually inspired me and motivated to keep working and fighting those battles, even when they get difficult, and that even a little help goes a long way.

With that in mind. I want to share The Immigration and Policy Center’s Executive Action Guide published March 13, 2015. It features an overview of the Executive Action, citizenship, and immigration enforcement, among other important issues to know about.

Letters of Recommendation by E-mail…

Letters of recommendation can make or break your scholarship and professional work applications. Scholarship and professional organizations receive thousands of applications each year. Obtaining a strong letter of support is key to putting your application at the top of the pile. Here are some tips to how you can request (and obtain) the strongest letter possible.

  • Scholarships: Answer the scholarship essay questions before asking for  recommendation letters.
    • Include your essay response in your request for a letter of support, this is especially important for letter writers that may not know you as personally.
  • Resume (or List of Extracurricular & Volunteer Activities): Make sure this list is perfect! Use your peers and or teachers for review and submit to your recommender.
  • Chose your letter writer wisely: The strongest letters come from people who know you and your work! These can include teachers, community leaders, advisers, coaches, or organization leaders.
  • Be professional! When using e-mail it is easy to revert to casual language, but college is training ground for the real world, so be professional with your e-mail.
    • Address the person by their title, (i.e. Dr. Jones or Professor Jones).
    • Remind them how they know you if you haven’t been in regular contact
      • i.e., “I was a student in your Politics 200 course Spring quarter and received an A in your class”
  • Include a description of the scholarship or job application (or attach the application to the e-mail).
  • Include the scholarship/job deadline and deadline for the letter.
  • Be sure to state you need a “strong” letter of support!
  • Lastly, thank them for their time and consideration!

Good luck!

2014 – 2015 Scholarship Resources (MALDEF)

MALDEF provides scholarships and various scholarship resources for high school, college, law school and graduate students that do not require citizenship or legal permanent citizen status.

Please check them out!



Scholarships from Educators for Fair Consideration

“Empowering undocumented young people in their pursuit of college, career and citizenship”

  • Most of these scholarships don’t require citizenship or legal status. Deadlines are coming up soon!
  • La mayoria de estas becas no requieren estatus legal.


“TheDream.US provides college scholarships to highly motivated DREAMers who want to get a college education but cannot afford it. Our scholarships of up to $25,000 will help cover your tuition, fees, and books for an associate’s or bachelor’s degree at our partner colleges in NYC, Miami, Washington D.C., El Paso, Rio Grande Valley, and online.”

Don’t forget, the deadline for your application is March 31, 2014!

Exámenes: ¡Sácate un diez!

¡Tiempo para exámenes! ¿Como se puede preparar? No les tengas miedo. Aquí hay algunos consejos para lograr tus metas:

Primero: Apaga tu Facebook y cualquier otra distracción. Estudios muestran que estudiantes que usan redes sociales pasan menos tiempo estudiando y tienen promedios más bajos que estudiantes que no usan las redes sociales. Tus amigos pueden esperar por algunos días.

Segundo: Cambia de panorama. Quizás la biblioteca no sea el mejor lugar para estudiar para un examen. De acuerdo a estudios, el cambio de localidad puede ayudar a la retención de más información.

Tercero: ¡Toma una siesta! Sí, estoy hablando de una siesta corta a medio día. La siesta te puede ayudar a consolidar información y ayudar con tu memoria de largo plazo. Ahora tienes una buena escusa para esa siesta.

Cuarto: Date un espacio de descanso durante tus estudios de materia. El descanso ayuda a la memorización.

Quinto: ¡Muévete! Un estudio de la universidad de California encontró que hasta seis minutos de ejercicio mejora tu habilidad de recordar lo que estas aprendiendo.

¡Ahora ya tienes las herramientas para sacarte un diez!

Para más información, visita:

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