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Bronx student wins full college scholarship; one of five in nation chosen for honors

Camila Diaz, a senior this fall at the Bronx Center for Science and Mathematics, is one of five students in the nation who will receive full college scholarships from the Leonore Annenberg College Scholarship Fund. The value of the scholarship will depend on the cost of the student’s college.
Other students chosen to receive the awards live in Boston, Philadelphia, Houston, and rural Vermont. The awards were made in the students’ junior year to allow them to select a college based on their aspirations and abilities, not finances. The all-expense scholarships cover tuition and fees, room and board, books, a laptop, as well as a modest stipend.
Now in its second year, the college scholarship program is part of the Leonore Annenberg Scholarship and School Funds, a three-pronged philanthropic initiative that targets young people who possess the potential to become the cultural and community leaders of the next generation. The awards focus on exceptional young artists, successful high school juniors who have faced serious challenges, and public elementary schools lacking essential resources for their students.
The program reflects the late Leonore Annenberg’s lifelong commitment to public service, education and the arts, and her unparalleled efforts to improve the lives of the nation’s youth.
“These awards provide opportunities for artistic growth and educational advancement to beneficiaries whose contributions will strengthen American cultural life and enrich our democracy. Their conduct and body of work will serve as a constant reminder of Leonore Annenberg’s generosity and high standards,” said Gail Levin, director of the program.
When Ms. Diaz began her education at the Bronx Center for Science and Mathematics she had been homeschooled for a full year and needed to catch up to her ninth grade peers. According to her academic advisor, Ms. Diaz was the strongest student in the class within only a month, and by the end of September she was already tutoring other students.
Now in her junior year, Ms. Diaz ranks third in her class of 116. In addition to AP and honors courses and a Japanese-language elective, she attends the Sponsors for Educational Opportunity Program in Manhattan, a rigorous academic enrichment program that offers college-level curricula, and dedicates time to peer tutoring and mentoring and serving on her student government. Camila’s numerous accomplishments – and her warmth, generosity, and upbeat attitude – are particularly notable in light of her enduring the continuing effects of complicated leg surgery.
Students who were selected as Leonore Annenberg College Scholarship recipients last year, 2008, will be attending Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Chicago and Tufts University this fall.
Download the full press release