2020 Suzannah Blackwell Scholarship Recipients

There were 23 highly qualified applicants for our scholarships and it was heart-warming to know that we have such outstanding students entering college in the fall!  We are proud to announce our Suzannah Blackwell Scholarship recipients for this year. The following students will each receive $500 towards his/her post-secondary education. On behalf of ESL/ESOL teachers in the Carolinas, we wish all of our applicants a successful college career!

Augustina Mendez Augustin


 Graduate of Henderson County Schools, NC

My name is Augustina Mendez and I am from Hendersonville, North Carolina. As a student who has taken ESL classes since Kindergarten and throughout my high school career, I have also chosen to challenge myself by taking rigorous courses throughout high school. During high school, I have been heavily involved in AJROTC which has helped me develop a strong work ethic. I am proud to say that I have overcome the language barrier between Spanish and English and I will be a first-generation high school graduate to attend college. I will be graduating from East Henderson High School in June and I plan to attend NASCAR Technical Institute in the fall. My career goal is to become an automotive technician for Nissan. After pursuing my goals and dreams, I would like to give back to my community, my family, and everyone else who shaped me in becoming the person I am today. 

Omer Jamil


  Graduate of Randolph County Schools, NC

My name is Omer Jamil and I will be attending the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in fall. I will major in Kinesiology in order to pursue a career in physical therapy. My family came to the US from Pakistan in order for me to get high education and being so close to college is truly special for me as I am also the first in my family to do so! I am really thankful for this scholarship and all my teachers who have had supported me throughout the years! 

Jennifer Bonilla Lagos


Graduate of SCCA Connections Academy, SC 

While there are many struggles that came from my immigrant household I still had many obstacles to face. I soon became a teen mother and a foster child. As these obstacles created so many barriers I did not stop there! I studied at connections academy then soon started dual enrollment classes. Graduating not only on time with my class. I am graduating with 20 college hours and a 3.4 college GPA. I am also a dean list student at my college. I am currently three classes away from registering to the trident's nursing program. I will not stop there. I will be registering for MUSC nursing school to hopefully get my BSN. As well as this crazy busy life. I am also a part of South Carolina's first-ever foster council. Hoping not only to bring change but to impact the lives of Hispanic children and teen mothers in care." 

Vanessa Gallego


Graduate of Greenville County Schools, SC

My name is Vanessa Gallego I am a first Generation American. My parents immigrated from Colombia to Greenville, South Carolina. Growing up in the American school system I was labeled as an ESOL student and I had to take the ELDA test every year until I graduated high school. That was one of the factors that pushed me to be better and determined to be successful. I currently attend Anderson University and I am majoring in Nursing. I am still very much determined to be the best in my class and have a career as an emergency registered nurse. 

Carolina Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages
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