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Latins United Awards Academic Scholarships

By La Prensa Staff


Latins United will help seven Latino students further their college studies by awarding each one a $500 scholarship. A committee of Latins United members, many of them former educators, reviewed essays and applications before making the scholarship awards.


Committee members Mary Morales, Lulu Perales, Sabina Serratos, and Mary Jane Flores chose the winners. Lucas County Auditor Anita López presented ceremonial checks at the Latins United’s monthly meeting on Sunday afternoon, June 13, 2021.


Adam Fredritz recently graduated from Bluffton High School with a 4.0 GPA. Fredritz was a two-year captain of his school’s soccer team, leading them to a state runner-up in the 2019-20 season. He also played varsity baseball all four years.


He worked as a seasonal produce picker and at a Wendy’s restaurant during high school, all while finding time to volunteer at St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima. Adam plans to earn a bachelor’s degree in exercise science, then pursue medical school, aiming toward a career as an emergency room physician.


“I’m just fascinated with science, any part of science,” he said. “I even took a couple of extra science classes this past year in high school, just to get me prepared for the next step in college.”


Adam stated a day job shadowing with a female doctor at St. Rita’s Medical Center cemented his desire to one day become an ER physician. If he’s unable to attend medical school at UTMC, he hopes to “venture out of state” to complete his medical education.


Caiden Guzmán has his sights set on an out-of-this-world career, based on his interest in SpaceX and the StarLink Project, which aims to provide global, high-speed internet access to countries without it, including Latino nations. He plans to pursue two college degrees: one in mechanical engineering and the other in aerospace engineering. He’ll begin his college education at the University of Dayton.


“When I learned about some of the South American and Central American countries and how they have Internet, but it’s not the strongest, not the most free,” he said. “There’s still a lot of places in South America where they’re still getting books delivered. That’s the way they do information there. It has to be quicker if they want to grow faster with the world. That’s something I’d really love to help with.”


To that end, he has already earned 38 college credits through advanced placement classes at St. Francis de Sales HS, where he recently graduated seventh in his class with a 4.3 GPA. He was named to the National Honor Society and became a National Heisman High School winner for his combination of academic and athletic success as a pitcher on the varsity baseball team. He had the lowest earned-run-average (ERA) in his league this past spring.


“I aspired to be an astronaut when I was young, but as I have matured, I realized that instead I want to be part of the team that makes space exploration possible,” he wrote in his scholarship application. “Mechanical and aerospace engineering are the driving forces behind many of the technological and medical advancements we benefit from today.”


Blake Hinojosa is a 2021 graduate of Sylvania Northview who aspires to one day be a trauma nurse. He is well on his way in his career preparation, participating in his high school’s Med-Tech program junior and senior year, where he’s already earned some college credit.


“This scholarship opportunity would help me financially with tuition and textbook costs,” he wrote in his scholarship essay. “I currently live with my retired grandparents who have raised me since I was a toddler and cannot support me with my college expenses. Since I was a kid I have always wanted to help people and serve my community.”


Part of his motivation for wanting to become a nurse is watching the health problems his paternal grandparents have suffered over the years, including diabetes, prostate cancer, and heart disease. But he also wants to help elevate the overall health of the Hispanic community as well.

Among his high school accomplishments is a 3.3 GPA, honor roll all four years, and four varsity letters earned as part of the football team. He will attend Mercy College of Northwest Ohio.


Shawna Jakubowski is currently enrolled as a fourth-year student at the University of Toledo, where she recently changed her major to disability studies. She wants to help others one day as a disability advocate, using her experiences identifying as part of three minority populations.


“Mostly, I just find that people just don’t really see disabled people as the same,” she said. “Disabled people need a voice, especially people with hidden disabilities like me. I have seizures. Not everyone can tell I’m disabled. Helping people to find their voice and reach out for help is the kind of advocate I want to  be.”


She currently serves in UT’s Student Senate and as a university social media ambassador. She has worked as a summer camp counselor and at a pizza shop/


Frankie Lizcano is a senior at the University of Michigan studying computer science, with an interest in one day working as a software engineer in machine learning and artificial intelligence.


“It’s the idea of one day using it to solve the world’s problems that we as humans can’t accomplish,” he said, noting that a field trip to the university and seeing firsthand their work with Toyota on artificial intelligence sold him on it as a possible career. “I’m willing to make that my journey through life.”


The former St. John’s HS valedictorian maintains a 3.88 GPA, while working as a research associate at the university’s Transportation Research Institute and as a supplemental instructor at the Engineering Center for Academic Success


Ashia Potter plans to attend Kent State University and major in business management this winter, once she completes basic training in the Ohio Army National Guard this summer. She hopes to one day open her own business after completing a military career.


Ashia was unable to attend the scholarship awards ceremony because she was at basic training, but her family was there on her behalf. She sent a message to Latins United through her sister:

“I am grateful you give the opportunity for us young adolescents to grow and make a difference in our community.”


She graduated from Oregon Clay HS in May with a 3.2 GPA, while competing in the junior business education group DECA. She previously was a member of the concert choir and FFA. She has worked as a team supervisor at Tim Hortons and as a style consultant at Target.


Analicia Soria is entering her third year of college, transferring from Eastern Michigan to the University of Toledo, majoring in social work. She has earned a 3.6 GPA and hopes to work with children—one day earning her master’s degree to become a therapist for kids. She intends to use the scholarship money on textbooks.


“Books are expensive. One book last semester was $170. I was in six classes,” she recalled. “I just want to help kids. I love helping kids. I know it’s going to be hard emotionally, hearing what they’ve gone through, but I want to help any way that I can.”


The 2019 Central Catholic HS graduate has volunteered at Mosaic Ministries and Cherry St. Mission, while also working as a sales associate at Champs Sports and as a cashier at Arby’s.


Other organizations, including the Spanish American Organization and Diamante, will award scholarships separately later this summer.




Copyright © 1989 to 2021 by [LaPrensa Publications Inc.]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 06/15/21 15:17:52 -0700.





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