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Meet Our 2021-2022 Scholars

All questions asked below were used from the card game, Stitch Story, created by Green Card Voices.

Amy Luciano Santamaria

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Business Administration

Anticipated Graduation: Spring 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I appreciate my resilience and strength to push through the unexpected things that life throws at me.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I would love to work within underserved communities finding and being a resources to support the healthy growth of the people within.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I will always be proud of making the decision of transferring to Augsburg. It was an extremely difficult decision since I would not graduate in the traditional timeline set for me but I am happier and have had amazing experiences that have helped me to grow into a better human being.


A.J. Hanson

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: History, Secondary Education (Licensure Only)

Anticipated Graduation: July 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

Being Indigenous and becoming the first in my family to get a 4 year degree!

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I want to educate others to help them achieve their goals and help others out of poverty, especially the Indigenous community of Minneapolis and Saint Paul.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I felt proud when I was able to get on the Deans List this past year!


Bryam Castillo
Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: Computer Science

Anticipated Graduation: May 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I appreciate myself for having a good personality that brings in good friends and family. Which has helped me recoil to be the best version of myself every day.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I want to be successful. By being able to give back to the community that I came from. I want help the young adults and kids that share a similar story to me.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I feel proud every time I see my brother and sister achieve their goals. I know I set the bar high for them but it’s because I know they can do it. I love seeing them do things that seem impossible.


Cameron Phillips
Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: International relations

Anticipated Graduation: May 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I really appreciate that that I’m fairly easy going and very open to new opportunities. I think its allowed me to do a lot of things others may not have access to.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I very modestly wanna be a good dude who has some ability to help others. Nothing extraordinary but I find those kind of more intimate ways of helping to be more impactful.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

Id say I’m probably most proud of my glass work at the moment like i took something i didn’t know anything about and just when for it. not sure its gonna lead to much but you never know and I think its defiantly given me some skills


Debi Bayisa

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Social Work

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

One thing that I appreciate about myself is how competitive I am with myself. Being competitive with myself motivates me.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

The thing that I contribute to this world in the future is “love who we are” because I think loving ourselves is very important for personal growth, and for our community that we serve.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

The time that I felt proud for learning or doing something difficult is at the end of my first year college. I went high school in the United States but my English was very poor which hurt my grade in high school so bad. But college help me overcome that, and I am very proud of my achievements.


Donzello barros

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: Business Management & Marketing

Anticipated Graduation: Spring 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

One thing I appreciate about my self is that I’m a charismatic leader. I like this about my self because I always see the best in people I come In contact with.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

Some of the things I want to contribute to the world in the future is creating a successful Marketing business. The reason I want to pursue this is to create jobs for entry level Marketers.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

A time I could remember was in spring semester 2021 my cousin passed away in the middle of the semester. I had no motivation to finish the semester out slowly I gained the motivation to finish the semester.


Fathi Dakane

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Social Work

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

Something I appreciate about myself is how I manage my time efficiently. Many people struggle with time management and that’s a major issue in our society but learning how to manage your time helps you be organized in life and prepare for anything thrown at you.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

As a social worker what I would contribute to world is by working to improve the lives of individuals, families and groups.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

A time I felt proud of doing something difficult is when we were in lockdown my sophomore year and I had to learn how to manage my own time and advocate for own learning.


Hafsa Abdi

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Biochemistry

Anticipated Graduation: May 2024

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

One thing I appreciate about myself is how dedicated I am with whatever I’m studying and I’m a very social person!

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

In the future I want to contribute diversity and unity. The ways I can do that is emerge myself in spaces that value those changes and recognize how important they are!

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I feel like as a stem major there are many instances I felt very challenged. The most memorable time thus far has to be being a first year and balancing the challenges of covid and my major. I think that is the most proud I felt in my academic career!


Haroon Al-Hajiby

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: Information Management Systems

Anticipated Graduation: April 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I like that when I start something I finish it. it’s been stuck with me since a young kid. thanks to my parents for that I think they put that in me.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I would like to open a foundation or a center to help the homeless and the needy. I love helping people and there is a lot of people that need help in this world.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

Coming from where I am and surviving and doing what needs to be done. I am forever grateful and proud. Never though I would be here attending a university and pursuing my dreams.


Jasmine Chikkala

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Social Work

Anticipated Graduation: May 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I appreciate that I am empathetic and want to help people because these are helpful for my social work career.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I want to help advocate for people with mental health and disabilities and create a more inclusive world because there is not enough advocacy for these populations.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I just completed an accelerated summer statistics course that was hard for me to do while working 30 hours a week.


Knaunong Xiong

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Biology/Pre-Medicine

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

The one thing that I genuinely appreciate about myself is my work ethics, it has shaped how I process moments of my highs and lows. It helps me redefine what failures or successes looks like for me. Above all, it keeps me going knowing my motivation is my drive.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

In a world that STILL experiences racism and micro-aggressions, I hope to better my communities and beyond with what it means to ‘help your neighbor’. As someone pursing medicine, I want to become an Emergency Medicine physician and be an advocate for universal healthcare. To me, advocacy does not stop just inside the hospital, but outside too. And we need more of it, Everywhere. This kind of work takes a village with the same heart, same mindset, and same goal. We need more empathy and equity, that’s what we need.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

One of the hardest things to do in life is knowing when to leave because it no longer serves a purpose to you anymore. No matter how attached we can be to one thing, place, or person, I believe one should always do what is best for them and it requires digging deep inside oneself. Only YOU know the answer and even if it was a regret, it was a lesson learnt.


Millenium Amha

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Public Policy

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

One thing that I appreciate about myself is my willingness to learn. This drive to learn has helped me to grow in so many different ways.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

My goal in life is to contribute something of value to the world so that I can leave this earth knowing that I’ve made a positive impact. As of now, I am unsure how I will achieve this overarching goal but that is what I plan to do.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

During my freshmen year of college, I made the choice to transfer to Augsburg University. It was a difficult to leave and start over again the process of applying and transitioning to a new university. Regardless, with persistence, patience and my core values as a guide, I am able to proudly call myself an Auggie today.


Nathan Vue

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: Business Management

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

 

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

What I appreciate about myself is that I am confident and outspoken. I enjoy meeting new people and learning new things!

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

Friends and being self-driven contributes towards my future. Having a group of friends who strive for the same success as yourself is self-impowering and motivating.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

During my freshmen year of college, I was struggling in terms of self-motivation and even more scared of how I was going to pay for college with little help from my parents. So I told myself that its only going to get harder from here on out, if you aren’t willing to give it your all what is the point in trying. So I brought myself applying to many jobs, as well as scholarships. On top of it all, I was received good grades and even found myself studying more than usual.


Nicole Gonzalez giles

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Social Work

Anticipated Graduation: May 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

One thing I appreciate about myself is my determination to graduate because it’s been a tough year with the pandemic and I know now more than ever that my determination serves as a source of energy to be able to go out in the field I am passionate about and do what I love.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

What I want to contribute in the future to the world is being a resource to the community I serve. This is important because as a first generation Latina student there were many things I had to learn on my own and I want to help provide those resources.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

In my opinion, my junior year was the most difficult because I had to learn the material that focuses on theories of social work and everything to do with it. It was difficult because I had only about 3-4 hours of sleep while doing school and an internship while taking care of a newborn baby. I was very proud of passing all my classes with good grades at the end of both semesters of my junior year.


Ruby Stately

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: History

Anticipated Graduation: May 2024

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I appreciate my diligence. I’m able to complete a project thoroughly and gain a better understanding of the material by doing so.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I want to inform and be informed by those around me. Change comes from the power of using our voices and being heard.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I felt proud of embracing vulnerability this past school year. I asked more questions, shared my experiences, and contributed to constructive discussions. I challenged my fear of being judged and pushed myself to be more open and expressive.


Selene Acevedo Cruz

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Clinical Psychology

Anticipated Graduation: May 2024

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

My Ability, to all things for what I want.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

Be able to be a bilingual psychologist for everyone.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

My greatest example is being able to enter university with very basic English and with great fear. Also the power to win certain scholarships.


Sharmarke Omar

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: Finance & Management

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I appreciate the work ethic I inherited from my parents as it drives me to become my most authentic self.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

My goal is to inspire because it impacts the world by making it a suitable place for all.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

I felt most proud when I became familiar with the so-called American life as an immigrant. I felt this way because it challenges me in ways I had not anticipated. It shook me to the core yet enabled me the courage to continue because the journey, after all, was worth it.


Yvonne Twinawe

Pronouns: She, Her, Hers

Major: Clinical Psychology

Anticipated Graduation: May 2022

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

One thing I appreciate about myself is my friendliness and empathy towards others. This is something I appreciate because you never know what others are going through in their life, so being nice and empathetic could make a huge difference for somebody else.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

In the future world I want to make sure that I contribute to my community. Mental health is not something that is viewed as a priority in communities of color. I want to help in advocating and informing POC about the importance of mental health.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

During the pandemic I found it extremely hard to do well in school due to the fact that I am a very in person/hands on learner. There were so many times where I wanted to give up, but I am proud of the fact that I didn’t give up and I am determined to finish school and graduate!


Zaj Lee

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Major: Computer Science

Anticipated Graduation: May 2023

Tell one thing that you appreciate about yourself and why.

I appreciate that I am a deep thinker/ observer. I am someone who needs some time to soak up information and that could mean reviewing the subject or reinforcing it with something else.

Share what you want to contribute in the future to the world and why.

I want to be the next stepping stone for my future kids or younger family. I want to provide them a new way to access the world by taking in the first dive in.

Tell about a time when you felt proud for learning or doing something difficult.

Just recently, during my summer internship. I had to learn a new programming language, called Python, to complete a project. The only programming language that I knew is Java. So I spent 2 to 3 weeks learning on the job on how to script in python. I then completed the project that was assigned to me, in about 4-weeks time.