HISPANIC HERITAGE FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES NINE NATIONAL YOUTH AWARD RECIPIENTS FROM A POOL OF 13,000 APPLICANTS
Top Latino High School Seniors to be Honored at Special Ceremony in Miami; Each Student will Receive $8,000 Educational Grants, Laptop Computers, and Take the Stage of the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., for the 20th Hispanic Heritage Awards
MIAMI, Fla. – The Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) today announced the national recipients of the ninth annual Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards, students who have demonstrated extraordinary levels of academic achievement, community service, leadership and cultural pride. Selected from a pool of 216 regional youth award recipients from across the country and 13,000 total applicants, these students will be honored at a special ceremony at Bongo’s Cuban Café in Miami on June 21. Subsequently, the students will be a part of the 20th Annual Hispanic Heritage Awards at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on September 7 in Washington, D.C. “As a leadership program, we are proud to identify, promote and prepare the national recipients for success, and to have positive impact as young role models,” said José Antonio Tijerino, President and CEO of the HHF. “We are privileged to be represented as a community, and Americans, by this group of passionate and visionary young men and women. Our future is in good hands.”
The nine 2006 National Award Recipients of the Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards are:
David Tomas Escamilla, Jesuit College Preparatory School, Dallas, TX - Academic Excellence, sponsored by Chase and MasterCard International. David will attend Harvard.
Fernando Salvador Sanchez, United Nations International School, New York, NY - Journalism, sponsored by NBC Universal/Telemundo. Fernando will attend Princeton.
Rayden Llano, Coral Gables Senior High School, Coral Gables, FL - Healthcare, sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline. Rayden will attend Stanford.
Marina Alanna Gatto, Mercy High School, Burlingame, CA - Community Service, sponsored by Dr Pepper. Marina will attend the University of California, Berkeley.
Eletha Joy Flores, Charles Herbert Flowers High School, Springdale, MD - Engineering & Mathematics, sponsored by ExxonMobil. Eletha will attend M.I.T.
Luis Flores, Corona del Sol High School, Tempe, AZ - Sports, sponsored by SUBWAY. Luis will attend M.I.T.
Eutiquio Chapa, Palma High School, Salinas, CA - Education, sponsored by Southwest Airlines. Eutiquio will attend Stanford.
Eric Hamilton Sanabria, King/Drew Magnet High School of Medicine and Science, Los Angeles, CA - Leadership, sponsored by Kellogg Company. Eric will attend Dartmouth.
Olivia Alvarez, St. John Vianney High School, Holmdel, NJ - Arts & Culture, sponsored by Smithsonian Latino Center. Olivia will attend Point Park.
Graduating high school seniors of Hispanic descent annually apply for Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards and are chosen by regional selection committees based on their academic achievement, community service, category focus, and an essay about the important role their heritage played upon their success. Nine gold medallion recipients in each of twelve regions receive a $3,000 educational grant and nine silver medallion awardees in each region receive a $2,000 educational grant for a total of nearly $600,000. More than 13,000 students apply.
After the local ceremonies, the 216 Regional Youth Awards recipients are narrowed down to one national Youth Awards recipient for each of the nine categories. Those individuals are honored at the National Youth Awards presentation in Miami where each student receives an additional $5,000 educational grant and a laptop computer. The national Youth Awardees will then be presented with their award onstage during the 20th Annual Hispanic Heritage Awards at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC on September 7, 2006. They will also be featured on NBC and Telemundo stations during a television special airing Sept. 30.
Hispanic Heritage Youth Award sponsors include Chase and MasterCard International (Academic Excellence), the Smithsonian Latino Center (Arts & Culture), Dr Pepper (Community Service), Southwest Airlines (Education and the Official Airline of the Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards), Exxon Mobil Corporation (Engineering & Mathematics), GlaxoSmithKline (Healthcare), NBC Universal and Telemundo (Journalism), Kellogg Company (Leadership), and SUBWAY Restaurants (Sports). Foundation sponsors include Allianz Life (also the Official Insurance Company of the Hispanic Heritage Foundation), Beazer Homes, Fannie Mae, Home Builders Institute, Staples Foundation for Learning, and Voto Latino.
About the Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards
In 1998, the Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards were created to identify and promote the next generation of role models by celebrating their accomplishments in the classroom and community. In its ninth year, this national leadership program annually provides more than 200 students with $600,000 in educational grants in 12 regions. These young leaders are promoted as role models for their peers and selected to serve in the new Speakers Bureau where they visit their neighborhoods, schools and community centers and inspire other youth to achieve. With the Youth Awards as a feeder program, the LOFT (Latinos on Fast Track) initiative was launched in 2004 to systematically develop sustainable relationships between top Hispanic young professionals who have been awarded and America’s workforce.
The Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) celebrates and promotes Hispanic pride, culture, accomplishment and leadership through national and regional educational and inspirational programs focusing on putting Hispanics in a position from which to lead.