For Goizueta Scholar Mariana Reyes, college is more than an expectation it’s an opportunity. Mariana hopes to encourage others to attend college through her influence as a member of Hispanic Outreach and Leadership at Armstrong (HOLA) and through her projected career path as a political science major.
When Mariana was in the fifth grade, she had a pivotal experience with an Armstrong student and noticed how college changes lives.
“In the fifth grade when I moved to Savannah, I barely knew English,” Mariana says. “An Armstrong student mentored me in English and helped me with my schoolwork. I saw her going to college and helping others, and I wanted to do the same.”
Years later, Mariana entered Armstrong herself on The Goizueta Foundation Scholarship, a prestigious award presented to 17 Hispanic Armstrong students every year. “The scholarship gave me the boost to go to college,” she says.
Once she began her first semester, Mariana needed little push to get active and involved on campus. As a freshman, she picked up a heavy 40-hours-a-week workload, took classes and became actively engaged in Armstrong’s HOLA program.
As an HOLA member, Mariana participates in a variety of community service events such as Latin Heritage Week and Armstrong’s own day of service, Treasure Savannah. She also spreads cultural awareness and reaches out to others through her HOLA involvement.
“We try to reach out to everybody. We get out and do community service, and our main goal is to get others to go to college,” she says.
In addition to spreading cultural awareness, participating in HOLA-sponsored community service events gives Mariana the opportunity to influence young students the way she was influenced in the fifth grade. Through HOLA, she mentors at Windsor Forest Elementary School and partners with Big Brothers Big Sisters to show elementary and middle school students around campus.
“We’re trying to mentor elementary school students so that they get to college,” Mariana says.
In the fall, Mariana will continue to influence others as she serves as secretary for the HOLA program and as a Student Governor Association (SGA) senator. She will also focus on her studies in political science and on her passion—law. In the future, Mariana hopes to use this passion to encourage others to seek higher education.
“I want to open my own practice to help others,” Mariana says. “I want to keep in touch with Armstrong to push others to go to college.”
—Written by Victoria DiNatale
Armstrong Summer 2012 Marketing and PR Intern
If you are interested in an internship with Armstrong’s marketing and communications department, please contact Emily Belford at 912.344.2971 or Emily.firstname.lastname@example.org.