“Like many of my classmates I am headed to a place that will be new to me next fall,” Diaz, who will be attending Boston College to pursue her masters in social work degree, said. “Having this financial assistance will help me furnish my apartment and purchase my books for grad school.”
The $5,000 award was established by Dr. Doug Lonnstrom ’66, professor of quantitative business analysis, and his wife, Cris to help a HEOP student get started after graduation.
“Cris and I wanted to help students move onto the next phase of their life,” said Lonnstrom. “With the establishment of this award, we will be assisting someone who doesn’t have the resources to take that next step and hopedully they will pay it forward and assist a future Siena student.”
The HEOP Excellence Award began last year after recognizing that many students in the program, although high achieving, do not have the financial resources needed to pursue opportunities available to them after Siena.
The award is intended to provide a financial cushion for students to put towards living expenses, transportation or to buy professional clothing.
Diaz was selected because of her community engagement, academic achievements and her desired pursuit of a graduate degree. While at Siena she spent a semester studying abroad in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, attended a service-learning trip to Jamaica and co-founded a chapter of Feel Good, a non-profit gourmet grilled cheese deli that uses its proceeds to educate others about poverty and hunger worldwide on campus.