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New Non-Degree Grant Program
The Board of Directors has added grants for people who are not attending full degree programs. The grant committee will meet quarterly to approve requests for funding for Certificate programs or for individual classes to help the applicants increase their job skills.
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Saturday, July 22, 2017



2009 Recipients

I would like to introduce the 2009-2010 Scholarship recipients:  Samantha Cruz will be attending College in Denver, Colorado in the field of Pharmacy; and Sarah Oates will be attending Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, New Mexico in the Pre-Medical field of study. Both or these young ladies are outstanding students and, without a doubt, will make us all proud of their accomplishments.

cruz Samanth Dawn Cruz

……After receiving my pharmacy technician certification, I obtained a job working in a health clinic that had a low cost pharmacy catering to the needs of low income, poverty stricken families. Our culture has many misfortunate families who cannot afford many of their much needed medications to stay healthy or even just function with daily activities. I felt such a strong connection to these struggling families that I decided I wanted to go on and become a pharmacist. While working full time in a clinic I took evening courses and after about six and a half long hard years became finally a pharmacist.
Being a pharmacist lets me make a difference. Many patients not only come to you to fill their prescription but they come to you for trust and confidence. I am able to reach out and make a difference and help someone each and every day. I know that is what I get paid to do but the rewards of the satisfaction I feel in my heart knowing I am making this difference, is worth more to me than any paycheck I will bring home…..

oates Sara Oates

…..I am graciously accepting the offer to speak at the reunion. Most of my high school class remembers me as the girl with bad luck because of my injuries during high school. I tore my ACL, both my junior and senior, missing both seasons of high school and club soccer, and almost missing opportunities to be recruited for college soccer. Although this seemed like bad luck, I want to inform my class that everything happens for a reason. My two knee surgeries are what got me interested in becoming an orthopedic surgeon. Without these injuries I may not have found what I love. They also taught me that hard work, determination, and never giving up can get you far in life. I could have given up on soccer, but I pushed through the challenges and go to do what I always dreamed of doing: play college soccer. These skills carried over into my academics, reminding me that pushing through stress, managing time, and always looking into the future are keys to success. I can’t wait to share my experiences with my graduating class!
Dr. Sarah Oates

2008 Recipients

In August 2008, the Scholarship and Grant committee met and selected two wonderful people to receive scholarships from the Juan de Jesús Vigil Family Foundation: Tiffany Lewis and Eric Mestas. Tiffany is attending James Madison University (VA), School of Media Art. Eric is attending Black Hills State University (SD) studying Video/Broadcasting
& Communication.

Let me introduce you to this year’s scholarship recipients through excerpts from their essays.

lewis Tiffany M. Lewis

If one can make it,…I can.” The familiar phrase reverberates in my mind as the warm stage lights hit my skin and cover the crowd of my peers gathered in the audience. It’s almost unreal to think that they’re eager to hear me speak, when, so many of these same people have been amazing me with their passion and talent for art for as long as I’d known them.

“…introducing Tiffany M. Lewis, director of the award winning documentary, Light From A Dark Cloud.”

….It wasn’t until around my senior year of high school, however, that I realized where my talents existed. I had always been enamored of technology and its capabilities, but after taking several graphic arts courses and music technology, I began to see how the computer was so much more than its bells and whistles. I discovered that the computer could be a medium to reach people, just as a painting conveys a meaning or message from a painter on a canvas, or for a composer, their score; I, too, could influence and show people what couldn’t be conveyed with words….

It is too often that we just spend our days speeding from place to place, angry at the world, jaded, and never really open to hear or see what’s really going on outside of our own lives. But the media is compelling; it grabs your attention, forces you to listen, and if, for once, the message was something positive, telling us to love and accept each other, perhaps we could start to make a better place for ourselves here as people all in the same struggle….

mestas Eric Mestas

….Finding your own passion and applying it to a job can benefit your life by having a reduced amount of stress and helping you to never work another day, because you can’t call something work if you’re having fun at it, and at this point in time, we should all be having fun because you only get one shot at life, so you might as well have as much fun as possible to obtain these great traits you will be performing without even really trying, and it’s all thanks to having passion….

2007 Recipients

In August 2007, the Vigil Family Foundation was extremely proud to award three scholarships to the following students:  Michelle Hattan, medical biology major at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL; Kalee Salazar, engineering major at University of Colorado, Boulder, CO; and Jennifer Lucéro, nursing major, Emily Griffin School, Denver, CO.

hattan Michelle Hattan

“….Soon enough, I began looking into starting my own oncology clinic, and from that point on, many opportunities came my way. With a fellow bioengineer from the University of IL, I started the Midwest’s leading oncology clinic right here in Chicago….We focused our research to start specific gene therapies for people who were found to have genes that would predispose them to certain types of cancer. This has been extremely rewarding work and I can only hope that as time goes on a cure for cancer will be in our grasp…”

  Kalee Marie Salazar

“I am returning to speak at my 20-year high school reunion and addressing the 2006 Class, because I discovered a way to preserve water outside of the earth and save many lives. I am also CEO for a bottled water company. Who begins a journey in life thinking of this type of discovery or the titles one will hold? Not many folks but it does come along when you are open to new ideas and experimental studies…”

lucero Jennifer Lucero

“My name is Jennifer Lucéro and I am the guest speaker at my 20th high school reunion. Why? One of the main reasons would be because I was seen as most likely to NOT succeed. I was faced with many obstacles. I became a mother at the age of 15. I had a negative attitude towards teachers and education. My attitude changed after having my son. I decided I wanted the best for my child and suddenly school and education became a #1 priority for me….I went on to fulfill another dream of becoming a Registered Nurse and managing an Alzheimer’s and dementia center to make a difference……”
(C) 2015 Juan De Jesus Vigil Foundation | Thornton, CO