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Scholarship Program

Earl Woods Scholarship Program

  • About
  • Recipients
  • Featured Scholars
  • Alumni

Funding tuition is just one of the many hurdles facing first-generation college students. Many are leaving home for the first time, attempting to juggle work and college classes while scraping together enough money for books and other supplies. At the Tiger Woods Foundation, nearly 90% of our scholars are first-generation college students, navigating through college on their own. The Earl Woods Scholarship Program (EWSP) is an incredible support network that includes admissions counseling, dedicated mentors, specialized internships, financial assistance and workshops for each scholar accepted into the program. In the first two years of college, dropout rates are generally the highest, yet 100% of our scholars continue past their second year and to date, 100% reach graduation day. This special community of scholars, who maintain an average GPA of 3.07, work together to succeed in college life at prestigious universities such as Georgetown, USC, UC Berkeley, UCLA and Harvard. It's never too early to start thinking about college, which is why the EWSP also offers families and students in grades 7-12 college-preparation workshops through the Tiger Woods Learning Centers and other community partnerships.



Orange County
RecipientCollegeMajor
Erika Adre UC Berkeley Chemical Engineering
Karla Aguilar UC Berkeley Computer Science
Marlyn Aguilar UC Irvine Economics and Sociology
Milinda Ajawara Hamilton College Biology and Women's Studies
Sharon Almonte Lewis & Clark College History & Hispanic Studies
Zayrha Arambuta* UC San Diego Undeclared
Melissa Arambulo UC Berkeley Architecture
Vernoica Arellano UC Santa Barbara Biopsychology
Tony Armas* UC Irvine Business Administration
Bhumi Bhakta UCLA Human Biology and Society
Alemar Brito Stanford Sociology
Trang Che UC Irvine Public Health
Aisha Cissna Humboldt State Environmental Science
Taylor Compton Harvard Neurobiology
Stephanie Estrada Chapman University Spanish
Fadi Farsakh UC Berkeley Integrative Biology
Claudia Flores* UC Berkeley Mathematics
Alicia Frausto* Claremont McKenna College Undeclared
Karina Gomez Haverford Undeclared
Raymundo Gutierrez NYU Music Education
Alex Hernandez* UCLA Undeclared
Bryan Lara* Kalamazoo College Biology
Phuong Le* UCLA Undeclared
Gustavo Lopez Reed Biology
Grisell Medina Chapman Psychology
Ladyssara Medina Chapman Biology
Eduardo Munoz Allegheny College Biology
Marcos Munoz UCLA Microbiology
Iliana Navarro Haverford College Spanish
Kevin Ngo UC San Diego Computer Science
Kevin Nguyen USC Computer Engineering and Music
Minh Nguyen UCLA Biology
Ngoc Nguyen UC San Diego Aerospace Engineering
Nhung Nguyen UCLA Anthropology
Tim Nguyen UCLA Physiological Sciences
Katrina Obieta Bryn Mawr College Biology and English
Michelle Ortiz* UCLA Neuroscience
Hector Pantoja Whittier Business Administration
Soo Jin (Judy) Park Harvard Social Studies
Mayuri Patel* UC Irvine Biological Sciences
Edgar Perez* Reed College Physics
Eduardo Rivas Lewis & Clark College Psychology and Hispanic Studies
Jessica Rodriguez Chapman Psychology
Karen Romero Occidental Undeclared
Felipe Sepulveda Harvard College Economics
Rogelio Tec UC Santa Barbara International Global Studies and English
Kristy Thompson Pepperdine University Business Administration
Wendy Torres UC Berkeley English and Gender & Women's Studies
Tiffany Truong Franklin & Marshall College Economics
Timothy Vu UCLA Biology

Students with an (*) are new scholars.

District of Columbia
RecipientCollegeMajor
Yury Amaya Georgetown University Psychology
Adrian Arias Ohio Northern University Criminal Justice
Jonathan Bowie Tufts University History and Religion
Ayanna Brooks Hood College Communication Arts
Jia Ling Dong Georgetown University Business or Engineering
Mariah Green Temple University Biology
Mariah Harrod Coppin State University Human Development and Family Studies
Jorge Hernandez University of DC Psychology
Xuan Trang Le University of Wisconsin-Madison International Business
Yaffet Menna Georgetown University Neurobiology and Finance
Stephanie Navarrete Syracuse Health & Exercise Science
Darion Parker Georgetown University English
Darryl Robinson Georgetown University Healthcare Management & Policy
Sitra Salaam Virginia Commonwealth University Psychology
Gloria Salamanca Georgetown University Healthcare Management
Sarah-Julie Tchokouani Ohio State Undeclared
Omokuyani Udiani North Carolina State University Chemical Engineering
Montel Yancy Tufts University Music

Students with an (*) are new scholars.

Boston
RecipientCollegeMajor
Jamal Adan* Boston University International Business
Lenny Baez* San Jose State University Kinesiology
Mikaya Emma* University of North Georgia International Affairs
Andreina Nieves* Syracuse University Biology
Shirley Peng* Boston College Biology

Students with an (*) are new scholars.

Military
RecipientCollegeMajor
James Green* George Mason University Criminology
Jaron McKinnon DePauw University Psychology

Students with an (*) are new scholars.

Alumni
RecipientCollegeMajor
Bianca Angeles UC Berkeley Psychology
Fatou Bekeyi University of Idaho Environmental Science
Trent Casillas Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Civil Engineering
Vladimir Casseus College of the Holy Cross Psychology
Stephanie Chae UC San Diego Human Biology
Evan Chang Occidental College Biochemistry
Taylor Compton Harvard College Neurobiology
Luz Flores Mount Holyoke College International Relations
Damion Hunt Florida A&M University Political Science & Pre-Law
Susana Lagarde CSU Fullerton Communications
Grace Lee UC Berkeley Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Tamika Mitchell University of Arizona Nutritional Science
Jenny Nguyen UCLA American Literature & Culture
Johanna Otico Whitman College Psychology
Avni Patel UCLA Biochemistry
Steven Pham UCLA Biochemistry
Nhat Tong UCLA Business Economics and Psychology
Omar Villa UC Santa Cruz Latin American Studies & Politics
Vina Vo USC Business Administration
Hebing Zhou Georgetown University Chemistry

Earl Woods Scholars Class of 2017

Meet our newest class of Earl Woods Scholars!

Jamal Adan

College: Boston University
Major: International business
Interests: Traveling, learning languages and volunteering
Fun fact: Oldest of eight siblings born in a refugee camp in Kenya before his family was chosen in a lottery to come to America

"Caring for my younger siblings helped me to gain the skills of patience and compassion. When faced with adversity, I learned to succeed no matter what and to be more altruistic."

 

Zayrha Arambula

College: University of California, San Diego
Major: Undeclared

"Our hardships have helped shape the way I think about the future. I'm optimistic and ambitious because I believe nothing's impossible and my dreams will be a reality. My mom's not-so-ordinary life has made me want to take risks. I want to travel the world and have a career that allows me to explore and study other cultures."

 

Tony Armas

College: University of California, Irvine
Major: Business administration

"A business man is what I see myself becoming; not only to be financially successful but creating a life for myself and also opening myself up as a person. Instead of confining myself, I will branch out as an individual."

 

Lenny Baez

College: San Jose State University
Major: Kinesiology
Interests: Training and competing in judo and teaching mixed martial arts to kids
Fun fact: Goal is to make the 2020 Olympic judo team

"I was in physical therapy for two months and those two months were life changing. I was able to see how a physical therapist helps people get better. I want to be the person that can change a person's day for the better."

 

Jia Li Dong

College: Georgetown University
Major: International business

"After arriving in the U.S. when I was seven, the rapidity of spoken English and its unfamiliar sentence structures discouraged me. After nine years, resilience had always been a part of me as a whole, for I did not give up on learning, which granted me the ability to master my grammar usage and become proficient in essay writing."

 

Mikaya Emma

College: University of North Georgia
Major: International affairs
Interests: Playing guitar, teaching sailing to kids, community activism
Fun fact: Accepted into the senior ROTC (Reserve Officers' Training Corps) program

"I have wanted to be an officer in the U.S. Army my entire life and college is the best road I can take. I will gain the confidence and the skills to work to accomplish my dreams and eventually be the best Army officer I can be."

 

Claudia Flores

College: University of California, Berkeley
Major: Mathematics

"Now I have the chance to pursue a college education and change my family history. The obstacles I faced have only made me stronger and more passionate about the life ahead. My personal history has shown that I can do and possess what I desire."

 

Alicia Frausto

College: Claremont McKenna College
Major: Undeclared

"I look forward to being the first person in my family to go to college. Every stroke in life I have taken up to this point has gotten me closer to earning the education my parents never receive. Despite the challenges, I keep swimming through."

 

James Green

College: George Mason University
Major: Criminology

"I've always had the desire to be in the military. I will strive to emulate the man my dad is today, so I too can have a great family and a great military career. My dad is without a doubt my hero."

 

Alex Hernandez

College: University of California, Los Angeles
Major: Undeclared

"I learned so much from my aunt when she was alive. My aunt taught me never to stop fighting, even when the odds are against me."

 

Bryan Lara

College: Kalamazoo College
Major: Biology

"I am looking forward to embracing any challenges life has for me and accomplishing every one of them. I am ready for the future. I am ready for college."

 

Phuong Le

College: University of California, Los Angeles
Major: Undeclared

"College will be the outlet for me to freely express myself and grow into my own person, where I can expand my musical abilities while exploring the many options of study available."

 

Adreina Nieves

College: Syracuse University
Major: Biology or neuroscience
Interests: Cheer and tutoring kids in English and Spanish at the community center
Fun fact: Born in the Dominican Republic and moved to Boston at 13 without speaking any English

"My grandmother has inspired me. Ever since she passed away due to Alzheimer's disease in 2009, I have planned and worked toward becoming a doctor and medical researcher."

 

Michelle Ortiz

College: University of California, Los Angeles
Major: Neuroscience

"I hope to be supportive and financially stable in the future so my children will not experience poverty and have the ability to freely express themselves without any limitations."

 

Mayuri Patel

College: University of California, Irvine
Major: Biological sciences

"I know that, no matter how difficult my life may seem to me, it will always be a gift -- a luxury -- to someone else. I am fortunate to have this almost endless supply of freedom and opportunity with which I can potentially make incredible change."

 

Shirley Peng

College: Boston College
Major: Sciences
Interests: Journalism, travel and visiting farms
Fun fact: Traveled to Mongolia for a journalism program and volunteered in Costa Rica

"Seeing my dad work so hard for my family inspires me. He works multiple jobs just to put food on the table for me and my siblings. My dad motivates me to work hard and has made me more independent."

 

Edgar Perez

College: Reed College
Major: Physics

"I have gained a deep appreciation for knowledge and my education. I am passionate about the natural sciences, technology and mechanics, and am eager to earn a degree in the field of physics. I consider knowledge my safe haven, and do not plan on ever reaching an intellectual plateau."


Trent Casillas

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
Civil Engineering

Internships: City of Anaheim / Condon Johnson and Associates / Tiger Woods Learning Center
Mentor: Aaron Bell
Three words to describe mentor: Friendly, knowledgeable and helpful
Fun fact: Competed in the National Student Steel Bridge Competition
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: Establishing family, friends and connections.

"This scholarship has eased the burden and stress of taking out many loans. I can leave college with very little debt and that is due to the generosity of the Tiger Woods Foundation."

 

Taylor Compton

Harvard
Neurobiology

Internships: ATENPACE in Madrid, Spain / Tiger Woods Learning Center
Mentor: Sandy Barry
Three words to describe mentor: Friendly, loving and long distance
Fun fact: Crew member and co-director of Harvard Emergency Medical Services volunteer organization
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: The other Scholars who are so impressive and so kind.

"Four years ago I stepped into this building [the TWLC] for the first time and I learned I was receiving much more than just a check. I had an instant support network as I started college on the other side of the country."

 

Luz Flores

Mount Holyoke College
International Relations

Internships: Odell Simms / DC Council
Mentor: Katie Vlietstra
Three words to describe mentor: Supportive, fun and inspiring
Fun fact: Spent a semester studying international relations in Spain
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: Receiving great career advice through the workshops.

"I cannot express how thankful I am to be part of the Tiger Woods Foundation, and I feel committed to using the skills I have learned here to give back to my community."

 

Damion Hunt

Florida A&M University
Political Science

Internships: Tallahassee City Commissioner / Townsend Public Affairs / Kelley Drye Law Firm
Mentor: Paul Rosenthal
Three words to describe mentor: Interesting, geunine and caring
Fun fact: Interning at the prestigious international law firm Kelley Drye
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: Making lifelong friendships.

"The Tiger Woods Foundation was better to me than I was to myself."

 
 

Tamika Mitchell

University of Arizona
Nutritional Science

Mentor: Tunisha Bowman
Three words to describe mentor: Truthful, inspirational and loyal
Fun fact: Spends her free time as a volunteer helping low-income families live more active and healthier lifestyles
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: Building an unbreakable bond with other Scholars.

"Despite the fact that we were all strangers when we first met, the Earl Woods Scholars and I now consider each other family. My Earl Woods Scholar family and my mentor have embedded an unconditional support system in my life. Now I am able to do anything without hesitation."

 

Johanna Otico

Whitman College
Psychology

Internships: UCI Child Development Center / Tiger Woods Learning Center
Mentor: Jennifer Hanlon
Three words to describe mentor: Caring, funny and helpful
Fun fact: Started an on-campus club to discuss diversity and multicultural issues
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: Practice in networking and creating friendships with the other amazing Scholars from around the world.

"When I first heard about the Earl Woods Scholarship, I thought it would just be money toward education. I learned over these four years that it is so much more than that. The internship and mentorship aspect of this program have been invaluable to my education."

 

Nhat Tong

UCLA
Business Economics and Psychology

Internships: Marriott / Lazy Dog Cafe
Mentor: Becky McLaughlin
Three words to describe mentor: Couldn't do without
Fun fact: Landed a job at PriceWaterhouseCoopers as a Risk Assurance Associate
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: The mentorship -- one of the most valuable resources I had as a college student.

"The mentorship I have is one of the most valuable resources I had as a college student. I definitely cannot imagine that I would be as successful without the help and support of my mentor. My mentor taught me how to believe in myself and my abilities."

 

Hebing Zhou

Georgetown University
Chemistry

Internships: Fudan University in Shanghai, China / Georgetown University, Research
Mentor: Ed Machir
Three words to describe mentor: Supportive, connected and friendly
Fun fact: Published two scientific articles on nanomaterials
Favorite thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar: Meeting new, great people.

"The Earl Woods Scholarship gave me hope and allowed me to become a proud Hoya at Georgetown University."



Susana Lagarde

CSU Fullerton
Communications
Prestigious photography award-winner

My whole life I told myself I was going to go to college. But halfway through my senior year, when I started getting accepted into colleges, I didn't know if I could actually go anymore because I didn't know where the money was going to come from. And then one day, I got home and received a letter from the Tiger Woods Foundation telling me I received the Earl Woods Scholarship. That was the day I knew I was going to college. It was a big relief.

 

Jenny Nguyen

UCLA
BA in American literature and culture
Blogger for official PGA TOUR golf tournaments

What I have found most meaningful about the Earl Woods Scholarship program are all the great people I've met along the way. The program and the people never cease to amaze me. They understand what we scholars are trying to do, and their belief in us makes a whole world of difference. A little bit of confidence can go a long way, but what this program has given me is so much more!

 

Evan Chang

Occidental College
Biochemistry
No. 1 in the biology department and graduating with honors

My mentor has been an integral part of my development throughout my years in college. I'm thankful to have a professional look after me and make sure I've been on the right track. Through my mentor, I was introduced to a general surgeon at Hoag Hospital that I shadowed over winter break, which gave me the confirmation that I do in fact want to be a surgeon. I am so grateful for that experience.

 

Steven Pham

UCLA
Biochemistry
President of Medical, Educational Missions and Outreach (MEMO) at UCLA, UCI and UCSD

My mentor Andy and I clicked instantaneously! He has been my friend, my mentor and one of the greatest people I've ever known. His words about promoting education and helping those less fortunate inspired me to join a medical mission trip to Vietnam where I learned lessons of humility and how to be grateful for the small treasures of life. His passion for helping others and the knowledge of how to run an organization has taught me how to run MEMO as best I can.

 

Vina Vo

USC
Business Administration
Traveled to Ghana to set up village's first community development bank

Without the Earl Woods Scholarship, I would not have the same insight, experiences or perspectives that I do about college, education and my impact in society. I wouldn't have had the support and guidance I needed in the times I needed them the most and for that reason, I am really thankful to be a part of the foundation. The mentorship and relationships I've built have been extremely valuable to me.

 

Grace Lee

UC Berekeley
Electrical Engineering & Computer Science
Accepted a full-time job with NASA for post-graduation

The benefit of being a scholar was meeting so many fantastic people who are supportive of me through my four years of college and even after I graduate. The Earl Woods Scholarship helped me graduate, which was always a huge obstacle for me in terms of funding. The TWF staff helped me prepare for an interview with Pixar where I landed a memorable summer internship. Then when I got the job at NASA, they helped me with negotiation and discerning whether this job was right for me. I am very privileged to have had an army of people supporting me throughout college.

 

Vladimir Casseus

College of the Holy Cross
Psychology
Member of an all-male a cappella group called The Sound of St. James

The best thing about being an Earl Woods Scholar is the support that you get. You never feel like you are alone, and there are always people who are checking up on you. I have become more motivated, focused and happier knowing that I have so many people to fall back on when I'm stressed or times get tough. My future plans became more solidified and less blurry since joining the Earl Woods Scholarship program. It feels great to have a good plan set in place and direction of where I want to go.

 

Fatou Bekeyi

University of Idaho
Environmental Science
Interned at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Washington, D.C.

As an Earl Woods Scholar, my biggest accomplishment has been to intern at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Washington, D.C. The Tiger Woods Foundation blessed me with this chance to work with EPA staff members and to understand what it feels like to work on real projects, like evaluating mercury spills. As an Earl Woods Scholar, opportunities keep arising, and I consider every one of them a gift. This program has helped me achieve my dreams.



Avni Patel

UCLA
BS in Biochemistry

My goal is to impact children at the professional level by implementing programs for youth development. Using these programs, I wish to help children reach their full potential to achieve their goals.
 

Bianca Angeles

UC Berkeley
BA in Psychology

I plan on obtaining a master's in student affairs in the future. This degree will help me advance my plans of working with students in a university setting where I can continue to pursue my passion for education.
 

Omar Villa

UCSC
BA in Latin American & Latino Studies

I will be applying to different master's programs and law schools this upcoming fall. I hope to attend a private institution where I will complete a joint degree program and get my master's in higher education and a degree in law.
 

Stephanie Chae

UC San Diego
BS in General Biology

My career goal is to become a doctor, and my passion is to serve under-represented populations through medical missions. I have a vision as a medical doctor to provide ways for these communities to have doctors of their own. I hope to mobilize clinics and provide training and sustainable health care. This fall, I will begin my medical studies abroad as first-year medical student in the China Dual Program.