The Lassonde Ambassador & Mentor Program is proudly sponsored by Jeff and Polly Unruh and the James A. Unruh Family Foundation. They support the program to enable first-generation and underrepresented University of Utah students. The ambassadors receive scholarships to engage the community and inspire other students to pursue their dream of earning a college degree. Why do the Unruhs support the program? Here is their answer:
“Our scholarships came about when we witnessed a talented, first-generation Latina student with the capacity and desire to pursue a STEM career path get sidelined. With little professional guidance or peer encouragement, seeing what was possible, navigating applications and securing scholarships proved insurmountable. We were heartbroken and knew we needed to find a way to empower others in a similar position to grasp what could be in reach.
“We worked hand-in-hand with the Lassonde Institute to develop the Lassonde Ambassadors Program. We provide scholarships to a group of first-generation and underrepresented U of U students each year, enabling them to work as a team in creatively reaching back into the community to engage high schoolers in experiential, entrepreneurial activities. This unique scholarship program personalizes what is possible and provides mentoring to help make more attainable the pursuit of entrepreneurship and STEM careers.
“The outcomes these ambassadors have achieved have had real impact, and it is inspirational to watch the leadership from the group in the desire to give back and create transformational opportunities within the communities they reach. The program has been an excellent fit with our foundation, seeding programs for youth that we hope others join and help flourish.”
Learn more about the Lassonde Ambassador & Mentor Program here: lassonde.utah.edu/lassonde-ambassadors.