Scholar of the Week

Victoria Medinilla      
Cal Poly Pomona

Victoria Medinilla, a freshman chemical engineering student at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, is a 2012 HENAAC-NAVSEA/SPAWAR scholarship recipient.  Victoria is a graduate of Claremont High School in Claremont, California, where she earned her diploma with a 4.0 grade point average. 

The NAVSEA/SPAWAR Scholarship is a $10,000 scholarship awarded to an outstanding, incoming, freshmen, attending a Hispanic Serving Institution and pursuing a major in STEM.  This highly competitive scholarship is renewable, up to four years, and includes a summer internship.

In high school, Victoria participated in a two-year course of International Baccalaureate (IB) Biology, Higher Level (HL).  IB Biology HL is a rigorous course covering both core and advanced biology topics ranging from ecology to human physiology while focusing on international issues such as bioethics, water treatment and biodiversity.  This course is one of the toughest courses offered at Claremont High School and is also part of the larger and even more demanding, IB Diploma program that also requires students to participate in creativity, action and service projects, a theory of knowledge seminar course and a comprehensive extended essay.  IB Biology also requires a minimum of sixty hands-on laboratory hours.  Victoria successfully navigated the demands of this course with an outstanding academic performance.

As a high school junior, Victoria was selected to participate in the PREFACE Program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.  The program gave her the opportunity to experience life as an engineering student, take classes and meet amazing individuals.

Victoria supplemented her academic performance with her extracurricular and volunteer activities.  As President of Club Med, a science club dedicated to students interested in pursuing a medical career, she organized the club’s involvement in the University of California, Los Angeles CityLab, which is a selective science instruction program.  Victoria was also active in the National Honor Society, an academic and community service organization whose membership is limited to students, who exhibit exceptional academic performance, well-rounded extracurricular activities and committed volunteerism.  Today, she continues to tutor children in mathematics, in an effort to expose youth to the world of STEM.

Victoria aspires to apply the skills and knowledge learned through her engineering studies and degree to improve the lives of her community.

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