|"We hope that we are able to assist many students so that their focus remains on education," says Marco Robles, public affairs director of Cardenas Markets, which donated $50,000 toward scholarships for high-achieving students helping the Latino community.|
Cardenas Markets has become a successful grocery store chain because of a deep desire to build a better future. It values the loyal support of the communities that have allowed the business to flourish, and it gives back by donating to colleges and universities to aid students "whose educational dreams might not be a reality," says Marco Robles, public affairs director for the chain.
Cal Poly Pomona has been included in these efforts through a donation of $50,000 made by Cardenas Markets to fund the Hilda L. Solis Scholarships for two years.
These scholarships are awarded to high-achieving students who have dedicated themselves to making a difference in the Latino community — many times with the support of campus clubs, organizations or the cultural centers. Each recipient receives $2,000 that goes toward a quarter's tuition.
"Two thousand dollars is a big financial help for a college student," says 2012 Hilda L. Solis Scholarship recipient Manuel Silva. "I will use the money to pay for tuition and books."
The scholarship is named in honor of Cal Poly Pomona alumna Hilda L. Solis and recognizes her many accomplishments, including being the first Latina to serve in a U.S. president's cabinet.
Silva, a fifth-year chemical engineering student, qualified because of his many activities, including bringing a recognized Latino author on campus, putting together College Day, organizing the Spanish Language Association's third annual Noche de Cultura, and being an active representative to La Union.
"Scholarship money from supportive donors lifts up some of the weight off students' shoulders," Silva says. "They can focus on their main goal: to work on their degree in order to become the future of the state, of the country."
Cardenas Markets recognizes the challenges many students face in reaching their academic goals, including the increasing costs of attending a university. According to Robles, these costs should not be the deciding factor between whether someone attends college or not.
Education is one of the catalysts of change in society and "as part of being a corporate responsible citizen, Cardenas Markets emphasizes the issue of education in the communities we serve," Robles says.
Cal Poly Pomona strives to provide all its students with a quality education in a collaborative effort among faculty, staff and the campus community. The university is able to extend its reach with the help of its donors.
"I think donors help personalize the college experience," says Nicole Forrest Boggs, director of development for university advancement. "A donor makes you feel like you have someone in your corner supporting you. It's not just the state of California helping to provide an outstanding education."
The scholarships Cardenas Markets have funded are signs of assurance in the eyes of recipients.
"This is a vote of confidence from the generous donors and organizing committee of the Hilda L. Solis Scholarship," Silva says.
According to Robles, Cardenas Markets chose Cal Poly Pomona because it provides a quality education and is an institution that accepts all ethnicities — especially the Latino community, the primary ethnic group that supports the markets.
"We hope that we are able to assist many students so that their focus remains on education," Robles says.
The Division of Student Affairs supports the university's educational mission through comprehensive programs and services that promote student learning and success.
Campaign goals include investment in the
Renaissance Scholars program, cultural centers and
Career Center, as well as the creation of a new Rose Float lab.
Douglas Freer, Vice President
Nicole Forrest Boggs, Director of Development