Three Outstanding HU Students Receive AAUW Scholarships
Three outstanding New Mexico Highlands University students received scholarships from the Las Vegas branch of the American Association of University Women.
Jeannette Urdiales and Rachell Pitrucha each received $1,000 scholarships. Hope Martinez was awarded $500.
“The Las Vegas branch of AAUW is very proud of these students for their determination to reach academic and personal goals for the betterment of the community,” said Carol Winkel, who co-chairs the local AAUW scholarship committee. “This scholarship award supports women who area non-traditional students attending Highlands University. These three women were selected from a field of highly qualified applicants.”
Urdiales, 61, will graduate in May from the School of Social Work’s one-of-a-kind bilingual/bicultural graduate program. She said her lifelong work has focused on advocacy for women and children, and her MSW will allow her to reach new levels in serving this population. Urdiales raised four children as a single mother and is a grandmother.
Pitrucha, 34, said her lifelong interest in finding rocks and gemstones in wilderness areas drew her to study geology at Highlands University, along with the affordable tuition. Her goal is to work in either environmental reclamation or mineralogy. The geology senior is a single mother to three children, aged 4, 17, and 18.
Martinez, 26, is a senior clinical psychology student who plans to pursue a master’s degree at Highlands. She is a Navajo from tiny Church Rock, NM near Gallup. Martinez is active in the university’s Women’s Center as well as the student club Women For a Change. Her goal is to work as a clinical psychologist with Indian Health Service.