Local connection - Several area students awarded prestigious LANL scholarships

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Submitted to the Optic

Eight San Miguel County students have won scholarships from the Los Alamos National Laboratory Employees’ Scholarship Fund. The fund awarded $411,500 to 73 students in Northern New Mexico to realize their dreams of attending college.

Winning $10,000 awards:

• Anna Finck, daughter of Raymond Finck and Rosemary Pierson, and a student at West Las Vegas High School, is a Silver Scholar. She hopes to attend Concordia College or the University of New Mexico and major in pre-med. Her goal is to become either an emergency room physician or pediatrician.

• Victoria Gomez, daughter of Placido and Maxine Gomez and a student at Robertson High School, a Silver Scholar, also won the $1,000 Phil Barker Memorial Scholarship. She plans to study physics or engineering.

• Gregory Medina, son of Gina Marie Medina and a student at West Las Vegas High School, won the $10,000 Pete Domenici Scholarship. He plans to attend Neumont University in Salt Lake City for a degree in computer science. His dream is to work with a national security agency.

Winning Bronze awards of $1,000 each for up to four years from San Miguel are:

• Rikki Giron, the daughter of Rico Giron and Marylou Quintana and a student at West Las Vegas High School.

• Sarah Goetsch, daughter of Kelly and Stella Goetsch, an undergraduate student at New Mexico State University.

• Sarah Lewis, the daughter of Shannon Trujillo and a student at West Las Vegas High School.

• Ashley Lovato, daughter of Frank J. and Christina Lovato, and a student at West Las Vegas High School.

• Aaron Padilla, son of Donald and Geraldine Padilla, an undergraduate student at the University of New Mexico.

Also winning $10,000 Sen. Pete Domenici Scholarships include Chantel Rivera from Mora High School.

Other Bronze winners who are in college include: Jacob-Michael Kelly, an undergraduate at New Mexico Highlands University, from Mora.

Micaela Lucero, of Santa Fe’s St. Michael’s High School, Española resident Danielle Harrier, who attends Pojoaque Valley High School, and Kevin Gao, a Los Alamos High School senior, each received the top award of $20,000 as Gold Scholars. Lucero has ties to the Las Vegas area.

Funding comes from donations by LANL employees and a matching amount from Los Alamos National Security, LLC. The awards are administered by the Los Alamos National Laboratory Foundation.

Now in its 15th year, the scholarship program has awarded more than $3.7 million to students in the Northern New Mexico counties it serves.