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The 2019 CLCF Scholarship Recipients!

We’re especially happy to feature our 2019 CLCF Scholarship winners! In our annual celebratory breakfast, we awarded 20 students with a $5,000 scholarship and honorary City of Chicago Resolution. To date our foundation has awarded over $300,000 in scholarships to Chicago students. Congratulations to all the winners!

2019 Celebratory Breakfast Gallery

  • My name is Jose Acebedo, and I attend the University of Illinois at Chicago. I plan to major in neuroscience and minor in philosophy. Thanks to the scholarship, I am one step closer to becoming a neurosurgeon, my main goal.

    Jose Acebedo

  • My parents immigrated from Mexico and raised me in the 31st ward. Their sacrifice put my brother and me on the pathway to receiving an education they never had. This past spring, I graduated from Albert Grannis Lane Technical High School, my father was never able to see me receive my diploma. I am currently studying for my Bachelor’s in Applied Cybersecurity and Information Technology at the Illinois Institute of Technology. My future, for the time being, is unsure but I look forward to becoming someone significant in life to make my family proud despite if they’re not with me anymore.

    Joshua Alaniz

  • My name is Ariana Cervantes, and I am from the South Side of Chicago, specifically the West Elsdon community. My family size is small; it consists of my mother, my father, and my little brother. I graduated from Muchin College Prep and currently attend Oberlin College as a Posse scholar. My passion is raising awareness for diversity, inclusion, and equity in education. Because of my focus on making a difference in my local community, I intend to make my own major for Public Policy with a concentration in education to continue my passion.

    Ariana Cervantes

  • Wilfredo was born in Jacksonville, N.C  and graduated from St Patrick High School in Chicago. He is currently a student at Illinois State University, majoring in Engineering Technologies.  He is a proud Eagle Scout with The Boy Scouts of America. He enjoys playing ping-pong, volleyball, running, swimming and volunteering at events. In the future, he sees himself as CEO of an engineering firm that focuses on rebuilding homes that promote living green.

    Wilfredo A Colon, III

  • Hello my name is Karen Davila, I am currently an undergraduate senior at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). I am majoring in Kinesiology with an educational goal of Occupational Therapy. I grew up in Mexico, and I learned many valuable morals and values that shaped my personality and make me the person who I am now. I am thankful for being one of the CLCF scholarship recipients because it has helped me to continue my undergraduate education, and pursue my main goal of becoming an Occupational Therapist.

    Karen Davila

  • My name is Paola Duarte and I am from West Town! I live with my mother and father, and my four siblings. I enjoy listening to music, singing, and watching MasterChef. I graduated from Jones College Prep and currently attend University Of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign to become a Special Educartion teacher. In the future I see myself as an educator who inspires her students to further their education and be excited about the joys of learning. 

Paola Duarte

  •  I come from Logan Square, Chicago. I graduated from Prosser Career Academy and I am currently attending Dominican University, studying in a Business Administration Major. I come from a family of 5 and I am a first generation student. I like to play soccer and ride bikes on my free time but also spend a lot of time with my friends. In the future I hope to start my career in Business and Travel around the world! 

    Cristhian Duena

  • Jessica Flores and has lived on the west side of Chicago for most of her life. I live with my mother and one of my brothers. I also have a sister and little brother that live with my father. I love getting to spend time with my family as much as possible. I graduated from Lincoln Park High School and am currently a Sophomore at Illinois Wesleyan University. I am currently majoring in Business Administration and minoring in Spanish. While I am open-minded to where the future might take me, I would like to get some experience as an assistant project manager. After gaining some experience in relation to management, I would then like to open a family business.

    Jessica Flores

  • My name is Sara Galván Orozco and I am a proud Northeastern Illinois University student, currently double majoring in Studio Art and Latino (a) and Latin American Studies.  I want to become an enormous financial contributor to the first generation, undocumented youth throughout the Chicagoland by sponsoring scholarships to aid the cost of tuition.

    Sara Galván Orozco

  • I am Karla Hinojosa Valdivia. I was born in Mexico but grew up on the southeast side of Chicago. I went to Ogden International School of Chicago. I am currently attending Oberlin College through the Posse Foundation Scholarship and I am thinking about majoring in Psychology, and Law and Society. Though in the future I see myself helping the immigration community, but I do not know what path I want to take to do so. My family is fairly small, only consisting of my father and mother, but recently we’ve been blessed to have a new member in the family, my little sister.

    Karla Hinojosa Valdivia

  • My name is Tania Lopez, and I’m from the Logan Square area. In my free time, I enjoy playing the piano and spending time with my family and friends. I attended Noble Street College Prep in 2019, and I’m currently studying at Columbia University in New York, majoring in Latinx Studies with a concentration in Education. In the future, I hope I’ll have the tools necessary to combat education inequity surrounding low-income communities. 

    Tania Lopez

  • My name is Chris Nieto and I am a chemistry major at Elmhurst College who is pursuing an American Chemical Society (ACS) degree. I am from the Belmont Cragin neighborhood, where I live with my parents and three younger siblings. Currently, for work, I am a chemistry tutor at Elmhurst College’s learning center, providing students with an outside resource to help understand material. Hopefully, I should be pursuing an undergraduate research program this summer in Argon IL, where I can learn more valuable techniques that can aid me as an industrial chemist in the future.

    Chris Nieto

  • Jasmine Parras is the daughter of two Guatemalan parents. She lived in Rogers Park but now she lives in Logan Square. She is the first generation in her family to attend a four-year institution. She graduated from an all-girls catholic high school, Josephinum Academy in Wicker Park. And now, she is attending Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut. Jasmine hopes to major in international studies and minor in Spanish. One day she wants to work in the government and possibly work as an ambassador of the United States of America.

    Jasmine Parras

  • Erica Pereira is from La Villita  and attended Lane Tech High School where she became fascinated by Computer Science. She is a first-generation student, currently a senior, studying Computer Science at DePauw University. Erica’s liberal arts education and career experiences have led her to aspire customer-facing roles after undergrad.  Erica hopes to become further involved in her community organization efforts and continue to contribute to the promotion of underrepresented communities in tech. 

    Erica Periera

  • I am a first-generation student and a sophomore at Northwestern University studying Engineering Science and Applied Mathematics.I hope to use my degree in the field of renewable energy and or sustainability.

    Alexandro Reyes

  • Paulina Rosales is currently a Senior at Dominican University and is expected to earn her Bachelors in Special Education and Bilingual Endorsement in the Spring of 2020. Through her experience at Wright College, Paulina has a background in leadership from her President position of the Honor Society, Phi Theta Kappa. Paulina is also a 2017 Golden Apple Scholar, a scholarship for promising future educators that will be teaching in need-based schools. Paulina wants to serve the Latin@ community after she graduates as a teacher and later on work as an administrator. 

    Paulina Rosales

  • My name is Leticia Rosas, I was born and raised in the Humboldt Park area in Chicago for most of my life. My parents are Mexican, I am the third of four children. In High School I was involved in a number of clubs and organizations such as toms club, student government, literature club, BottomLine, over 200 hours in community service and I was NHS president.  I am the first in my family to attend college. I am currently a freshman at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign majoring in Psychology. In the future I see myself working achieving my masters and Ph.D. in order to enter the clinical psychology field with a possible interest in pursuing research. 

    Leticia Rosas


    Jose Noel Ruiz

  • I’m from Little Village and Mexico. I’m the youngest of three. My father passed away when I was 11 years old.  I am studying psychology at the University of Illinois in Chicago. I see myself working with immigrants like me, so they can feel more comfortable expressing themselves in Spanish. I would love associate with someone in Mexico and start a non-profit organization at my mom’s pueblo. 

    Melissa Salcedo


    Jessica Trujillo