Arcadia High School
University of Chicago
Greg Chen has not let his family’s working-class background prevent him from achieving amazing successes. While growing up, he remembers his long walks home from school while his parents worked late nights for minimum wage. But Greg always chose perseverance over self-pity. Having arrived in the United States in the 7th grade, speaking no English, Greg has not let any of these obstacles slow him down.
Greg is a member of Arcadia High School’s national champion team in constitutional debate, and is also a member of the school’s state champion team in the Physics Bowl. Greg is determined to repay his parents for all their sacrifices by obtaining a college diploma. This conscientious and compassionate scholar, musician, and athlete is headed for success, and we are delighted to be part of the journey.
Mark Keppel High School
Benjamin Lee is dedicated to being an asset to humanity, and we have no doubt that he will succeed. This first-generation college student is passionate about serving the greater good as a physician and social activist. Benjamin’s unwavering optimism and carpe diem attitude are all the more remarkable considering he had to juggle rigorous academics and extracurricular activities with caring for his sisters and sick mother at home.
Benjamin graduated fourth in his class and has been actively promoting awareness of social issues through work with student groups and non-profit organizations. With the fervor of a true activist, Benjamin vows that “As long as I have breath, I will not neglect my obligation to humanity; . . . and I will not fail those who place hopes in me, especially my mother.” We cannot wait to see the many ways that Benjamin will contribute to society.
Duarte High School
Mount St. Mary’s College
Cindy Oliver has an indomitable spirit and a sage-like perspective. The proud daughter of migrant farm workers, she embodies her parents' aspirations for a better life and the will to achieve it. When she was a child, she attended the local swap meet with her father every weekend at 5 a.m. At times, she was so embarrassed she would hide if she recognized someone. Cindy now believes that her experience taught her tremendously about the value of a dollar, the importance of hard work, and the depth of her parents' love.
She did not plan to attend college until she participated in a summer program at the University of California at Riverside for children of migrant workers. After that summer, she promised herself that she would graduate from college and eventually become an immigration attorney to help individuals who are at risk of being separated from their families. She is well on her way to achieving those goals having graduated with honors from Duarte High School and we look forward to seeing all her future achievements.
Schurr High School
Insightful and thoughtful, Levi Wong is well on his way to becoming a terrific psychologist or teacher. Levi used his interest in psychology to take charge of his own path and turn his life around, leading him to graduate from Schurr High School with highest honors. He also served as Editor-in-Chief of his high school’s yearbook and volunteered with Key Club. He will be attending U.C. Irvine and plans to major in psychology and social behavior,
Levi plans to give back to the immigrant community as a psychologist or teacher. He would like to work with students who, like him, struggle with emotional difficulties or lack a support network. We are sure that Levi’s maturity and unique insights will take him to great heights!