SoCalGas’ employee resource group, Gas Employees Network Toward Empowerment (¡GENTE!), announces the four winners of the newly launched ¡GENTE! Scholarship program. For the first time, SoCalGas partnered with Minds Matter to raise over $10,000 in scholarship funds to help prospective students attain new opportunities, better living wages, and to close the socioeconomic gap that has developed through generations.
“The new GENTE Scholarship program was designed to exemplify SoCalGas’ core values to champion people, do the right thing and help shape the future,” said SoCalGas Vice President of Gas Engineering and System Integrity and ¡GENTE! executive sponsor, Gina Orozco, said. “Low-income, first-generation, and minority students all face many obstacles and inequities regarding higher education. We’re hoping to establish scholarship programs as such to help establish a strong foundation and a pillar of support for young adults.”
" At Minds Matter Southern California, we work every day to deliver progressive and tailored programs that empower dreams, cultivate growth, and tackle challenges our students face. This scholarship program will help our students bridge the financial aid gap, discover new experiences at college and ultimately drive meaningful change back in their communities,” said Tina Admans, president of Minds Matter Southern California.
The program was created to help empower students from historically underserved Hispanic and Latino communities and provide necessary resources to access higher education. The scholarship was open to high school graduating seniors who reside within the utility’s service territory and will be attending a vocational/technical school, a two-year or four-year university.
“I am aware of all the challenges I may face as a first-generation minority student, but I am excited about all the new challenges and opportunities I have ahead of me,” said Penelope Osorio, a freshman at Boston University. “It feels like the stress of attending college has been lifted off my shoulders due to this incredible opportunity of financial support.”
This year’s ¡GENTE! Scholarship program recipients are:
• Jeuhdiel De Angel, who will be attending University of California, Berkeley studying Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing.
• Penelope Osorio, who will be attending Boston University studying Business Administration.
• Lisely Perez, who will be attending University of California, Merced studying Biological Science with an emphasis on Human Biology
• Yesnia Primo, who will be attending University of California, San Diego studying Psychology.
¡GENTE! aims to promote understanding and awareness of Hispanic and Latino culture, and facilitate member and ally participation in networking, community engagement, and mentorship opportunities.