15:22 PM

UHD Students Receive The Satya Raj Scholarship

Paloma  Esparza-Guerra (left) and Bianca Paz (Right)

The University of Houston-Downtown Center for Community Engagement & Service Learning (CCESL) has awarded The Satya Raj Scholarship to UHD students Paloma Esparza-Guerra and Bianca Paz.

The scholarship, a competitive opportunity geared toward service-minded students who aspire to learn and grow with the community, was established in 2018 by Drs. Atul and Poonam Salhotra. The Salhortas created the scholarship to honor their mothers who worked tirelessly to ensure their seven children had an opportunity to pursue higher education. Now, the Salhotra’s are paying it forward to two deservomg students each academic school year in the amount of $2,000. 

Esparza-Guerra is a junior majoring in education with a bilingual focus. As a former student-teacher at Keeble Primary, a Montessori school in Aldine ISD, she aspires to be a role model for her future students. 

“I hope to never stop learning and growing so that I can be a positive example to my students,” Esparza-Guerra said. “The career I chose is very rewarding, and I would love to see my first class of pre-k students graduate from high school and persue their own dreams. I aspire to cultivate respect, accountability and creativity within every student I have the privilege of teaching.”

Paz is a first-generation sophomore majoring in biotechnology who wants to apply what she learns to help others. 

“I aspire to use the knowledge I'm gaining to further my studies in my field and hopefully earn a master's degree to study biomedical engineering,” Paz noted. “I want to have more in-depth knowledge and help others while doing things I love.”

Esparza-Guerra and Paz told Gator Update they are grateful for this scholarship and plan to serve with the Community Scholars Program, which promotes student success inside and outside of the classroom, throughout the upcoming year.