Project TEACH, an incentive scholarship program at Hope College whose primary objective is increasing the number of persons of color in the teaching profession, has chosen a 10th group of participating high school students.
A total of five Holland-area students have joined the program during the current calendar year. Jessica Urivez joined the program in April. Monica Arismendez, Nydia Chavarria, Leonardo Martinez and Marcella Mascorro have all joined the program starting with the new school year. They will all be recognized during a reception at the college's Maas Center auditorium on Thursday, Sept. 29, at 7 p.m.
The public is invited. Admission is free.
Project TEACH (Teachers Entering a Career Through Hope) provides mentoring and instructional support for the high schoolers, who begin as sophomores or juniors. The program also provides scholarship aid for the participants as Hope students. The program's goal is to help local students while increasing the number of minorities who become teachers locally.
Monica Arismendez is a junior at West Ottawa High School, and the daughter of Leonarda and Orlando Valentin of Holland, and Tomas and Amanda Arismendez of Holland. Her activities at school include competing on the cross country team and playing flute in band, and she also participates in Upward Bound.
Nydia Chavarria is a sophomore at Holland High School, and the daughter of Noe and Juana Chavarria of Holland. She provides peer counseling through the school's "PAL"
(Peer Assistant Listeners) program, plays clarinet in band, and participates in Upward Bound.
Leonardo Martinez is a junior at West Ottawa High School, and the son of Lupe Martinez of Holland and the late Leonardo Martinez Sr. He is a linebacker on the school's football team, and has volunteered with West Ottawa's program for the children of summer migrant workers.
Marcella Mascorro is a junior at West Ottawa High School, and the daughter of Ray and Sherry Mascorro of West Olive. She participates in sideline cheerleading in the fall and competitive cheerleading in the winter, and is a member of the school's choir. Formerly in band, she continues to play flute in church.
Jessica Urivez is a senior at West Ottawa High School, and the daughter of Juan and Lisa Urivez of Holland. Her activities include the school's PAL program, HOPE (Hispanic Organization, Pride and Education) and Upward Bound.
In addition to this year's new students, the program's participants are: Kristine Brandt, a senior at Hope; Sashy Camaal, a junior at Holland High School; Justine Campos, a junior at Hope; Tiffani Delaney, a sophomore at Hope; Joanie Kasten, a senior at West Ottawa High School; Tiffany Khousakoun, a senior at Holland High School; Valerie Lopez, a senior at West Ottawa High School; Monica Martinez, a freshman at Hope; Yadira Martinez, a junior at Hope; Tung Nguyen, a sophomore at Hope; Jessica Nykamp-Schwander, a sophomore at Hope; Esperanza Rodriguez, a senior at Holland High School; Diego Romero, a freshman at Hope; Pannha Sann, a senior at Hope; Wanda Turner, a freshman at Hope; Victoria Vicencio, a freshman at Hope; and Antoine Williams, a senior at Hope.
The program has six graduates: Meyly Sew and Sonia Soto, who are members of the Class of 2003; Kristina Kyles Houston, Kristina Martinez and Dina Vathanaphone, who are members of the Class of 2004; and Dinah Rios, a member of the Class of 2005.