El CENTRO — MANA de Imperial Valley (MANA) recently awarded $20,500 in scholarships to 33 local high school and community college students in Imperial County, according to a press release. Scholarship amounts ranged from $500 to $1,000.  

Students had an opportunity to meet MANA board members Saturday, June 19, pick up their scholarships, and receive recognition certificates from MANA de Imperial Valley, Congressman Juan Vargas, Senator Ben Hueso, and Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia at Jalisco’s Grill in El Centro.  MANA de Imperial Valley is a nonprofit focused on empowering Latinas through leadership development, community service, and advocacy. Since 2007, MANA has awarded close to $200,000 in academic scholarships.

MANA de Imperial Valley President Rosyo Ramirez said, “MANA has and will continue to invest its efforts to recognizing exceptional students in Imperial County and support them to further their education.”  

MANA Scholarship Co-Coordinator Martha Singh said, “MANA is able to offer local scholarships thanks to the generosity of our members, sponsors, and community partners. Although the local chapter was unable to hold the annual Scholarship Gala last October, we were still able to continue our scholarship program. We are especially grateful to The Gas Company for their donation of a $10,000, which allowed MANA to expand the scholarship program to deserving students.” 

This year MANA offered a college scholarship for high school graduates, an EOP Transfer Scholarship for Imperial Valley College students, and the Elsa Downs Nursing Scholarship. Applicants were required to submit completed applications, a resume, essays, and demonstrate community involvement. 

MANA, a National Latina Organization, was founded in 1974 as the Mexican American Women's National Association. MANA's original intent was to provide a voice for Mexican American women at the national, state, and local levels. The organization has now expanded into a diverse group of Latinas who continue to develop their abilities in political, social, and professional fields.  

 The 2021 MANA Scholarship recipients included the following students:

  • Itsel Cerecedo, Julitza Alvarez, Abbie Castro, Octavio Cardenas, and Astyn Martinez — all of Brawley Union High School.
  • Allen Arreola, Alejandro Rosales Mendez, Magaly Ramirez, and Alexander Mosqueda — all of Calexico High School.
  • Isaac Islas — of Calipatria High School.
  • Anaid Perez, Sebastian Avila, Ali Hussain, Vanessa Vasquez, and Brianna Barrett — all of Central Union High School.
  • Inez Rosales and Alonzo Valenzuela — both of Holtville High School.
  • Felipe Gutierrez and Gloria Kim — both of Imperial High School.
  • Jacqueline Gomez, Julia Gutierrez Ramirez, and Guadalupe Torres — all of San Pasqual High School.
  • Yaritza Quezada, Dominique Molina, Paulina German, Hyun-Soo Choi, Dayanna Cuevas, Ana Paula Munoz, Jazlyn S. Peraza, Paola Soto Ley, and Angela Manzo — all of Southwest High School.
  • Carly Nava and Allie Fonseca — both of Imperial Valley College.

For additional information regarding the MANA de Imperial Valley Chapter College and University Scholarship, the IVC EOP Transfer Scholarship, and the Elsa Downs Memorial Scholarship, contact Scholarship Co-Coordinator Martha Singh at 760-540-9687, or via email at ivmanascholar@gmail.com.

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