This is Why Latino College Students are Next Level
Even though Latinos are now attending college more than ever before, we are still far from being a majority in the universities across the country. College might still seems inaccessible for us, especially when we talk about money. This is why it is so important for us to find all the scholarships and grants out there that are intended for our community. One of them is the Café Bustelo El Café del Futuro Scholarship which is awarded every year to ten Latino students to help them accomplish their dreams.
We are talented, we have ideas, we want to make the world a better place and we need to keep pushing to get a college education. So to inspire you, we want you to meet 5 incredible Latinos who are in college or went to college and who are blowing minds everywhere:
1. Brian Robau
Brian Robay is a Cuban-American film director who was born and raised in Miami. In 2016, he won a Silver Medal for the Student Academy Awards for his film ‘It’s Just A Gun’. And last year he won the Directors Guild of America Student Film Awards for his thesis film “Esta Es Tu Cuba”. If he accomplished all this while still in school, imagine what he will do now that he has graduated. Don’t be surprised if you see him nominated next award season.
Daniela Orozco and Veronica Gonzalez still remember how many homeless people they saw on the streets of the San Fernando Valley everyday on their way to high school. This was the inspiration behind their project. They wanted to help these homeless people but coming from low-income families, giving money was not an option. Instead, they invented a solar-powered tent that folds into a backpack. The two of them, alongside 10 girls, took on this massive project and, with the help of grants, mastered the engineering skills necessary to make this project a reality.
3. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
You might already know AOC. Alexandra was born in the Bronx from a Puerto Rican family, and attended Boston University. While in college, she worked for a senator on immigration issues and as an organizer for 2016 presidential campaign. Following college, she want back to the Bronx where she worked for the National Hispanic Institute helping other Latinos in high school make their way to college. With the experience from her college days, she decided to run for office and even though it sounded far-fetched, she had the determination to make it happen. Today she is the youngest woman to serve in Congress and we all know this is just the beginning of her political career.
4. Janel Pineda
Janel Pineda is a poet who was born in Los Angeles from an El Salvadorian family. Her poems tell the stories of her family, her community and her experiences as a Latina in the US, best seen with her poem “Being a Latina Woman on a College Campus”. She has a Bachelors in English from Dickinson College in Pennsylvania, and she also studied English Literature at the University of Oxford. Using poetry as her means of expression, Janel challenges the preconceptions of who we are and gives the audience a clear vision of what it means to feel like an outsider in your own country. She hopes her poetry can help others struggling with the same issues. Her art inspires and makes us feel, just what good poetry is supposed to do.
5. Wes Avila
Wes Avila grew up in Pico Rivera taking in all the flavors around him. As a Latino you know that food is at the center of the family and for Wes it was his true passion. When he finished high school, he worked driving a forklift until he saved enough money to go to college. He enrolled at the California School of Culinary Arts, where he was able to create and experiment. He then moved to France to study high cuisine and came back to work in some of the best restaurants in Los Angeles. Wes Avila needed more money to pay off his student loans, his wedding and his travels, so he started selling tacos outside his favorite coffee shops. This is how the gourmet tacos from Guerrilla Tacos were born. He has reinvented this classic food and many agree that his tacos are the best tacos in Los Angeles. If you are ever in the city, go get your taco fix at his restaurant in the Arts District.
Now you know, if you are a Latino and you are in college, apply for the Café Bustelo El Café del Futuro Scholarship and make your dreams come true. The application process is very easy and you could be awarded $5,000 to get you one step closer to your goal!