Five from BISD receive Gates Millennium Scholarships
Five of the Brownsville Independent School District’s top
students have won Gates Millennium Scholarships, meaning that all of their
college expenses are covered all the way through graduate school and that they
will receive a myriad of other support.
Abigail Sanchez and Priscila Garcia (Band
member) of Rivera High School, Jorge Rocha of Brownsville Early College
High School, Sherry Hurtado of Pace High School and Lucero Estrella of Hanna
High School are among a select group of 1,000 students nationwide chosen as this
year’s winners of the Gates Millennium Scholarship.
“The key word is life-changing because it provides seamless
support for these students, for the ones that don’t have the financial support,”
Pilar Janis, BISD’s lead higher education counselor, said of the scholarship.
“One of the main aims is to create a cadre of future leaders
in America. ... It goes to only 1,000, so it’s a pretty prestigious award, and
we have five of them, so that’s pretty good,” she said.
Each year the Gates Millennium Scholars program chooses 1,000
of the top minority students in the United States to receive
good-through-graduation scholarships. The GMS supports the cost of education by
covering unmet financial need and providing self-help aid. Renewable each year
with adequate academic progress, the scholarship also covers graduate school in
computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public
health or science, according to the GMS website.
In 2000, Brownsville native Emiliano Camarillo was
among the inaugural class of Gates Millennium Scholarship winners. Today he is
the head band director at Lucio Middle School. Coming back to Brownsville to
teach was always part of the plan, he said.
“It allowed me to leave Brownsville and to experience other
cultures and bring that experience back to my students. ... It allows complete
freedom. All I had to do was focus on my education. I didn’t have to worry about
how I was going to pay for it,” he said.
Camarillo, who earned a master’s degree in music education at
North Texas State University, said the application process for the Gates
Millennium is rigorous, a fact attested to by two of this year’s winners,
Sanchez and Garcia at Rivera.
“It’s a lot of work, you need lots of extra-curricular
activities and your essays need to be outstanding and personal so you stand out
from all the rest,” said Sanchez, who will study bilingual education and plans
to get her master’s and eventually her doctorate.
She will attend Texas A&M University in College Station, a
school she became sold on after visiting the campus. She said winning a Gates
Millennium Scholarship is a great feeling
“It’s such a blessing from God to receive it because now I
know I have the financial means to attend college,” she said.
Sanchez is the daughter of Miguel and Imelda Sanchez.
Both she and Garcia said they will be the first in their
families to attend college.
Much like Camarillo, Garcia plans to become a band director.
She will attend the Moores School of Music at the University of Houston to study
music education. She plans to eventually pursue a doctorate in music education.
Camarillo took the chance to thank his government teacher
Patricia John for nominating him for the Gates Millennium and Janis for
encouraging all BISD students to apply for the Gates and other scholarships.
“In our district, we work collaboratively,” Janis said. “We
work as a team to help students get selected for scholarships. We believe in
PACE BAND STUDENT ACCEPTED INTO BERKLEE COLLEGE
OF MUSIC IN BOSTON!!!
Pace High School Senior Percussionist Michael
Gonzales has been accepted into the Berklee College of Music in Boston,
Massachusetts. Michael will be involved with Berklee’s Jazz Drum Set Studies
Program, where he will further his already strong passion for the percussive
arts. The Berklee College of Music is one of the most prestigious music
conservatories in the nation where Michael was selected from a pool of hundreds
of applicants. Along with that accomplishment, Michael also received 1st
Chair in the 2010 Region 28 Jazz Audition and excelled as a leader in the Pace
High Jazz Band throughout his high school years. Michael’s success is stemmed
from his everlasting perseverance and dedication to bettering himself as a
musician along with the love and support of family, friends, and teachers. He
has made all of Pace and Brownsville very proud and we wish him the very best as
he continues to this new chapter in his life.
receives Berklee Award
The Pearl Percussionist is
being recognized for his neighborhood Latin music
The Berklee Office of
Community Affairs and Campus Engagement will
acknowledge outstanding people who help the college
to enrich our neighborhoods and facilitate the
educational, cultural, and artistic development of
Boston during the second annual
On Saturday, April 16, 2011 at Berklee’s David
Friend Recital Hall, 921 Boylston Street, Berklee
acknowledged Fausto Cuevas in front of members of
its community, city leaders, and community
The ceremony featured musical entertainment with
Berklee alumnus percussionist
and his band, Orquesta la Moderna. Cuevas is being
“Performance of the Year” for his concert
during the 2010 Tito
Puente Latin Music Series, a free Latin music
concert series held at various landmarks in
different neighborhoods throughout the city each
summer. Cuevas, who was on tour with
last summer, flew from Norway to Boston specially
for his “Performance of the Year” concert.
The Berklee Urban Service Awards are based on the
principle that institutions of higher education
realize their greatest potential when they serve as
fully committed members of the community.
Congratulations to Fausto from everyone at Pearl