Five exceptional high school seniors from the Pasadena Unified School District have received full four-year college scholarships.
By News Desk
Each has been selected to receive a four-year full-tuition scholarship from the Posse Los Angeles Foundation. They are among 90 students in the Los Angeles area to receive the prestigious Posse Leadership Scholarship this year from a pool of 2,200 nominees. Each of the recipient scholars will attend one of Posse LA’s nine partner colleges and universities.
Superintendent Brian McDonald, Ed.D., said:
I am incredibly proud of our 2023 PUSD Posse Scholars. Each of these exceptional students exemplifies the ultimate vision we have for all PUSD graduates. They’re creative thinkers, they’re effective communicators, they’re excited to learn from and work with others, and they’re clearly prepared to become the leaders of tomorrow.
Tiffany Jasso, Blair High School
Tiffany Jasso hopes to become a cardiologist someday and her Posse scholarship will help that dream become a reality. She is a member of the Sports Medicine Club, Health Occupations Students of America, Sports Medicine National Honors Society, Associated Student Body, Yearbook, and has served as manager for Cheerleading, Girl’s Basketball and Girl’s Volleyball.
Tiffany plans to major in Biology at Pepperdine University and then attend medical school specializing in cardiology.
Minal Saldivar, Blair High School
Minal Saldivar has been a member of the National Honor Society (NHS) since tenth grade. Enrolled in IB and Dual Language programs since elementary school, Minal has also completed three college courses that will earn her college credit.
She is an active member of Blair’s Associative Student Body and has served as graphic design volunteer for Blair’s annual fund. Minal will attend Dickinson College where she will focus on the humanities. She is interested in cultural anthropology and international studies and hopes to participate in Dickinson’s study abroad program. Eventually, she plans to seek a career in social justice.
Christina Leyva, John Muir High School Early College Magnet
Christina Leyva has taken several Advanced Placement (AP) courses. She has already earned approximately 30 college credits through the Early College Program at John Muir. As a high school athlete and leader, she is involved in water polo, swimming, marching band and is the ASB secretary.
Christina will attend Dickinson College, where she plans to major in English and possibly double major in Humanities. She plans to pursue a career helping children as a speech language pathologist.
Estrella Barcenas, Marshall Fundamental Secondary School
Now a senior at Marshall Fundamental, Estrella Barcenas is heading to Kalamazoo College in Michigan, where she plans to major in Psychology. Her Posse Award will cover tuition for four full years. Estrella became a documentary film maker in Girls’ Voices Now and won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2021 for “Outstanding Short Form Children’s Program.”
Estrella is the Associated Student Body (ASB) Class of 2023 Senior Class President. She is Co-Founder and Co-President of the Mental Health Club, in which she emphasizes the importance of self-care but she also finds time for Rock the Street, Wall Street, a financial literacy club, and the Latino Club. She became a documentary film maker in Girls’ Voices Now and won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2021 for “Outstanding Short Form Children’s Program.” As a student ambassador for the City of Pasadena and volunteer for the Tournament of Roses, Estrella remains committed to community service.
Owen Hom, Marshall Fundamental Secondary School
Owen is a scholar, an athlete and a volunteer in his community. Currently a high school senior at Marshall Fundamental. He currently has a 4.5 GPA and has made the Principal’s honor roll every semester. Owen has served as the Associated Student Body Treasurer and as Member at Large. He’s a member of the National Honor Society, the Science National Honor Society, Asian Club, Filipino Club, Students for Environmental Awareness (SEA) Club, Computer Science Club, and Key Club.
Owen is recognized by the College Board as AP Scholar with Honors and is a candidate for the distinguished AP Capstone Diploma for his research at Caltech and JPL entitled, “How Might Climate Change Predictions on Greenhouse Gases Worldwide Need to be Reevaluated and Refocused?” As a student-athlete, Owen has been a four-year member of the Marshall Eagle Baseball Team, joining the varsity team as a sophomore and helping the team set records and win titles ever since. Owen will attend the University of Wisconsin–Madison where he plans to major in Digital Science. The Los Angeles Foundation Posse award will cover tuition for four full years.
The Posse Foundation
The Posse Foundation, established in 2002, identifies, recruits, and trains high school students with extraordinary leadership potential. To date, Los Angeles area scholars have won $249.4 million scholarship dollars from partner colleges and universities.
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