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Sixteen Spring ISD Seniors Receive $1,000 Scholarships at Spring ISD CTE Advisory Board Scholarship Luncheon

Dekaney High School senior Nailah Abus-Samad, NASA Senior Satellite Systems Engineer Dorothy Ruiz-Martinez and Westfield High School senior Brittany Miller talk about pursuing careers following the Spring ISD Career and Technology Education Advisory Board Scholarship Luncheon
Dekaney High School senior Nailah Abus-Samad, from left, NASA Senior Satellite Systems Engineer Dorothy Ruiz-Martinez and Westfield High School senior Brittany Miller talk about pursuing careers following the Spring ISD Career and Technology Education Advisory Board Scholarship Luncheon.

HOUSTON - May 12, 2017 - Sixteen Spring ISD seniors were honored at the Spring ISD Career and Technology Education Advisory Board Scholarship Fundraiser Luncheon and Auction on May 5 at the Hilton Houston North Hotel. The students each received a $1,000 scholarship from the CTE Advisory Board. In addition, five teachers were awarded program grants totaling $6,121 and an additional $6,143 was awarded for student certification exam reimbursements.

Following a lively and profitable auction facilitated by auctioneer Kevin McMillian, the students and guests were treated to an inspirational keynote address by Dorothy Ruiz-Martinez, NASA Senior Satellite Systems Engineer.

As a little girl, Ruiz-Martinez said she was always looking up — first at the stars from the top of her grandparents’ house in the city of Matehuala, San Luis Potosi, Mexico — and then, a bit later, when she watched the tragic failed ascent of the Space Shuttle Challenger. It was a pivotal event that would forever shape her future and ultimately land her at NASA where she has pursued an interesting and exciting career.

A graduate of Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science degree in aerospace engineering, Ruiz-Martinez shared first-hand the benefits and opportunities that become available when students continue their education after graduating from high school. She spoke directly to the senior scholarship winners in the room when she said, “You can do anything you dream of – you can do anything you set your mind to.”

Student scholarship recipients and the schools where they plan to attend are:

  • Nailah Abdus-Samad, Dekaney High School, University of Texas at Austin School of Undergraduate Studies;
  • Natalie Bennett, Spring High School, Tarleton State University;
  • Jersey Garcia, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, Lone Star College and Texas Woman’s University;
  • Michael Cervantes, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, Texas A&M University;
  • Emily Huynh, Westfield High School, University of Texas at Austin;
  • Marissa Jenkins, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, University of Texas at Austin;
  • Michelle Lee, Westfield High School, Lone Star College and Texas Woman’s University;
  • Raylon Knowles, Westfield High School, Texas State University;
  • Samantha Lu, Westfield High School, Lone Star College and Texas Tech University;
  • Andre Martinez, Westfield High School, University of Texas at Austin;
  • Denice Paule, Spring High School, University of Texas at Austin;
  • Brittany Miller, Westfield High School, Sam Houston University;
  • Sarah Persaud, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, University of Houston;
  • David Pham, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, University of Texas at Austin;
  • Evelyn Vanegas, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, Sam Houston State University; and
  • Courtney Riel, Carl Wunsche Sr. High School, Lone Star College and Texas A&M University.

The Spring ISD Career and Technology Education Advisory Board is a non-profit organization that supports the Spring ISD Career and Technical Education program in a advisory capacity and through its annual fundraiser the provides scholarships for students and grants for teachers. Many volunteer hours are spent evaluating the CTE program needs at each campus and making recommendations for both long- and short-range planning based on the current job market and future trends. For more information, go to www.springisd.org/cte.