Meet the 2009 Awardees
CSU Los Angeles
Trustee Ali C. Razi Scholar
In elementary school, Araciel Juarez was one of only two students to receive a presidential academic award, going on to a magnate middle school. She was in a high school honors programs when, at age 15, she became pregnant. She accelerated her studies at the independent-study Options for Youth High School, earned community college credits and graduated high school with honors at 16.
Aspiring to become a nurse, Araciel enrolled at Los Angeles Mission College to complete her prerequisites. In spite of the challenges of raising a daughter, she also volunteered at MEND (Meeting Every Need with Dignity) in Pacoima and at Olive View Hospital. In 2007, she learned her husband was denied his visa and must wait in Mexico until 2017 to reapply. Nevertheless, she maintained a 3.9 GPA, worked part time and earned her associate's degree with honors in 2008.
Araciel began studies last fall in CSU Los Angeles' nursing program. She plans to become a registered nurse and, ultimately, a pediatric nurse practitioner.