Student strikes gold with $40k scholarship

June 14, 2016

File Photo 

(L-R) Nino Gonzalez, Dr. Serrata, Itzel Tejeda and Brian Kirby. Itzel Tejeda being awarded a Jack Kent Cook Foundation Scholarship for $40K .


An El Paso Community College (EPCC) student, Itzel Tejeda, was awarded the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship.


The foundation awards about 85 students per year with $40,000 to complete a Bachelors degree at any four-year college. 

The Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship is the nations largest private scholarship that is awarded to the top students transferring to four-year universities.  

“This is a tremendous honor. This opportunity will allow me to pursue my studies and to one-day give back to the community who has provided so much support for me,” said Tejeda. 

The award will help Tejeda with most of the cost that comes with attending a four-year university. 

It covers not only tuition, but also living expenses, books, and any other required fees.

The selection process is extremely competitive. 

Before being accepted, a panel of distinguished university admissions professionals use the following criteria to review each application: Achievement and academic ability, Financial need, Persistence, Leadership and Service to others.

Besides the main criteria, students must also be currently enrolled at an accredited United States Community College or a two-year institution of higher learning with sophomore status. 

Student must also plan to enroll full time in a baccalaureate program at an accredited college or university. 
The scholarship is awarded to students who show financial struggle and have an outstanding academic record. 

“El Paso Community College is incredibly proud of the achievement of Itzel Tejada,” said Dr. William Serrata, President of EPCC. “Her achievements, both scholarly and in representation of EPCC, are one that the Board of Trustees and I are immensely proud of.” 

This award is one of the highest honors a student can receive before transferring to a four-year university.
Students who have already attended a four-year university are not eligible for the scholarship.

The only way a current university student may be found eligible is if he/she has not finished the first semester of their baccalaureate program. 

Though the foundation looks at academic excellence first, they will consider students that come from extremely poor financial issues.

Including the following:

-Education costs that outweigh scholarships and grants given to the student.

-Students personal and family income are insufficient to be able to cover educational costs.

“We’ll look forward to the amazing accomplishments as sh  e continues to prosper her educational career,” said Serrata. 

For more information on the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship, go to


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