(WASHINGTON DC – Monday, April 15, 2019) Three DC scholars will receive scholarships this spring from local LGBTQ Latinx organization LULAC Lambda. Thalia Lin Flores, Seth Canada and Stephanie Niaupari will each get $1,500 from the organization affiliated with the oldest and largest Latinx civil organization in the United States — the League of United Latin American Citizens. Finalists were selected from a pool of candidates who applied this winter and impressed LULAC Lambda with their community service, academic performance, and future plans.
“This year we expanded our scholarships to three candidates because of increased support from our donors and the volunteer power of our organization’s members to raise funds for a good cause,” said LULAC Lambda President Jesse Garcia. “We’d like to thank Brother Help Thyself, the Latino GLBT History Project, and DC Eagle for providing financial assistance to our scholarship drive.”
This year’s scholarship recipients include a high school senior, college student, and graduate student attending District of Columbia schools.
Graduating high school senior Thalia Lin Flores carries a 3.0 GPA while maintaining her star status as a volleyball player at Latin Public Charter School. Flores, whose family is from Puerto Rico, spearheaded an effort to collect food, clothes and supplies in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Her award was made possible thanks to a contribution made by the Latino GLBT History Project to uplift Afro-Latinx scholars.
“I happily accept the LULAC scholarship that I will be using toward my college tuition. I plan on attending Johnson & Wales University in North Miami,” said Flores. “After my education, I look forward to going into the Culinary field as a chef and hopefully opening a few restaurants in the next 10 years.”
College student Seth Canada is a survivor. A transman who endured homelessness, Canada is now working hard toward becoming a pro-bono human rights and immigration lawyer. Prior to becoming a naturalized citizen in 2018, he lived in fear of deportation as an undocumented immigrant.
“I aspire to fight for immigrant and LGBTQ+ rights. I hope to become a lawyer advocating for indigent clients with no ability to pay for legal services, including those seeking asylum after fleeing birth countries in fear of homophobic and/or transphobic murder,” said Canada. “In the fall of 2019, I will be a senior at the Catholic University of America, where the LGBTQ+ student organization is unrecognized by the current university administration. I aspire to continue to fight against anti-LGBTQ+ sentiments including homophobia, transphobia, heterosexism, cis-normativity and trans-misogyny at the university, places providing services to the homeless, and in society at large. Such bigotry was what contributed to my homelessness. I was denied employment and housing by many. While staying at a shelter and attending classes in the fall of 2018, I maintained a GPA of 3.53.”
Stehpanie Niaupari is a master’s student and graduate assistant at Gallaudet University with a 3.87 GPA. Niaupari enrolled in the International Development program.
“My next step is finding a PhD institution with a program on Urban Planning that will provide me an intersectoral and multidisciplinary approach to learning and community advocacy,” said Niaupari. “As a lifelong urban citizen, linguistic and cultural accessibility is often neglected in large cities — especially in their food systems. There are many opportunities that are often unused or overlooked due to language gaps. This summer I will launch Plantita Power, an online platform that shares food policy issues and community efforts in Spanish, English, and American Sign Language in Washington, DC.”
Applications for LULAC Lambda’s 2020 Scholarship will become available on Oct. 1 at www.lulaclambda.org.
LULAC Lambda is a community action group launched in 2014 to ensure Latinx LGBTQ people had a voice in the District of Columbia and in the LULAC National Organization. Our members have volunteered in the community and raised funds to increase the capacity of local organizations that serve the most vulnerable Latinx and LGBTQ residents of the District.
Applications for the 2020 Scholarship will open October 1, 2019.
to 2019 Scholarship Sponsors:
Brother Help Thyself
Latino GLBT History Project
Thalia Lin Flores (2019)
Latin Public Charter School
Seth Canada (2019)
Stephanie Niaupari (2019)
Maria Gramajo (2018)
Mirna Elizabeth Maldonado (2018)
Benjamin Banneker High School