Armstrong President Linda M. Bleicken, university officials and students accepted a $10,000 check from Consul General of Mexico Javier Díaz de Leó on behalf of the Hispanic Outreach and Leadership at Armstrong program.
(December 13, 2016) – On Friday, Dec. 9, Consul General of Mexico Javier Díaz de Leó visited Armstrong State University to sign a memorandum of understanding with Armstrong President Linda M. Bleicken. The Hispanic Outreach and Leadership at Armstrong program is a recipient of the Mexican Consulate’s 2016-2017 IME-Becas Scholarship Program, which benefits Mexican and Mexican-American students.
The scholarship program provides $10,000 and will be matched by the Armstrong Foundation, totaling $20,000. Since 2003, Armstrong has provided $2.6 million in support of scholarships and grants for Latino student success.
“The IME-Becas Scholarship Program will ensure that our students’ financial burden is lessened, so that they can focus on and enjoy their undergraduate journey towards degree completion,” said Lucero Aradillas, assistant director for the Office of Multicultural Affairs at Armstrong. “This comes as a new opportunity for Armstrong to help students who are only a small amount away from making a choice that will impact the rest of their lives.”
Before the signing, Consul General Díaz de Leó thanked the multicultural affairs team for their support in facilitating the process, stressing that access to higher education will continue to play a key role in the success of Mexican-Americans.
“Education is very powerful and tremendously important,” said the Consul General. “With HOLA, Armstrong provides a model that is perfect for this type of program. We see this memorandum as a first step and hope to continue this program every year.”
Bleicken noted that the Latino population at Armstrong has steadily grown since HOLA’s establishment in the early 2000s. Currently, Latino students account for more than 8 percent of Armstrong’s student body, and 65 percent identify as Mexican.
“These are students who bring a work ethic that is unmatched,” said Bleicken. “Our Latino students are vital members of our community. It is an honor to be able to partner with the Mexican Consulate to help these young people.”
Following the signing, the consul presented the scholarship check before retiring to meet with HOLA and IME-Becas eligible students.
Since 2005, the Mexican Consulate has provided over $10 million in support of higher education opportunities, and $53,000 will be awarded this year alone to institutions like Armstrong in the southeast.