Arianna Lopez Awarded Girls Inc. National Scholar
updated: Feb 25, 2015, 7:30 PM
By Girls Inc. of Carpinteria
Girls Inc. of Carpinteria is proud to announce that Arianna Lopez, an 18-year-old
senior and a long-time Girls Inc. of Carpinteria participant, has been selected as
a 2015 scholarship winner in the competitive Girls Inc. National Scholar Program.
She was awarded $20,000 to be applied toward furthering her education and attaining
a college degree.
Girls Inc. National Scholars are outstanding young women selected for exemplifying
the Girls Inc. mission of inspiring all girls to be strong, smart, and bold. They
are role models for other girls who demonstrate a commitment to achieving
academically and serving their communities. This year, Girls Inc. awarded 31 high
school girls scholarships for educational expenses at any accredited college or
university, from a record-high pool of applicants.
Arianna joins a list of 18 other young girls from Girls Inc. of Carpinteria to be
named a National Scholar. With a strong history of producing Girls Inc. National
Scholars, Girls Inc. of Carpinteria comes in at #7 for highest number of National
Scholars compared to the rest of the affiliates throughout the nation (there are 82
total affiliates nationwide).
"We are beyond thrilled to see Arianna receive this prestigious, well-deserved
award and be named a Girls Inc. National Scholar," said Victoria Juarez, executive
director of Girls Inc. of Carpinteria. "Arianna is an incredible young leader who
proves that with the right support, all girls can achieve success and change their
communities for the better. We're proud to be developing the next generation of
young female leaders at Girls Inc. and look forward to seeing Arianna continue to
reach great heights."
As a young girl, Arianna battled illness, including a head injury at the age of
five. She has been with Girls Inc. of Carpinteria for 14 years and has participated
in nearly every program the organization offers, building resilience, developing a
support network, and acquiring the skills she needed to become an advocate for the
Arianna, who has completed over 2,600 community service hours, spent six years
successfully nurturing a diverse local coalition to ban smoking in the city of
Carpinteria. She and her peers researched, attended trainings, cultivated local
businesses, educated community members, and spoke at City Council meetings. The ban
went into effect on May 16, 2011, reducing exposure to secondhand smoke and
decreasing tobacco-related litter in the community.
"Arianna's journey has always been positive by her own doing and she has had an
undisputed impact on her peers and younger girls through her empathy, strength and
leadership skills," said Asa Olsson, former cultural arts director at Girls Inc.,
who first met Arianna as a first-grader in the drama program at Girls Inc. "She
sets her goals high and sees the occasional stumbling blocks as challenges to be
conquered. It's been a privilege seeing her grow up to become the young woman she
is today - an outstanding advocate and spokesperson for a healthy community and for
the rights of women and girls."
In 2014, she was recognized for her community service by Radio Disney with a "Hero
for Change" award, for highlighting the risks smoking holds and helping make
Carpinteria a smoke-free city.
Through Girls Inc. programs and events, Arianna says she met inspiring girls and
encouraging women made her want to strive to be like them. She also credits an
experience meeting creators at DreamWorks through Girls Inc. for sparking her
interest in graphic design.
"I am ecstatic and feel so fortunate to have been selected as a Girls Inc. National
Scholarship recipient," said Ariana, currently a senior at Carpinteria High School.
"Girls Inc. has helped me understand the importance of taking a leadership role and
I would not be who I am today if it wasn't for everything Girls Inc. has instilled
in me over the last 14 years. My experiences here have been life-changing."
Arianna plans to attend Santa Barbara City College in the fall and ultimately
transfer to UCSB. In addition to graphic design, Arianna also plans to study
photography and journalism.
"I want to be able to expose the significance that girls and women around the world
possess and help break the mold of false image that society has placed on the minds
of so many young girls," she said.
Since 1993, Girls Inc. has awarded over $4.6 million in scholarships, making higher
education a reality for hundreds of high school girls across the United States and
Canada. Scholarships are awarded annually and are open to Girls Inc. participants
in the 11th and 12th grades.
Arianna's scholarship is awarded through The Pearl Fund, established in 2013 by
fashion designer Georgina Chapman and JCPenney in partnership with Girls Inc.
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