A Fresno Unified Scholarship will help Acsa Payan of Duncan Polytechnical High School achieve her dream of attending Fresno State and a career as a teacher.
Coming from a family of seven with a limited, unstable income, Acsa was sometimes unsure she would ever make it to college. The Fresno Unified Scholarship provides not only a much-needed financial boost but recognizes her dedication and determination to pursue higher education.
Acsa is one of 45 students awarded Fresno Unified Scholarships this year, provided through the generosity of Fresno Unified employees and the community. All winners will be recognized May 10 at an inaugural awards banquet at the Golden Palace, organized by Parent University. The community is invited to attend the banquet.
Through the Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund, the district will award $60,000 in scholarships to students this year, many who have overcome losing parents, language barriers, extreme poverty and numerous other hardships. The students persevered to excel academically and be leaders among their peers.
All of the scholarship recipients have inspirational stories about how they achieved academic success. For Acsa, the turning point was when she joined the child development pathway at Duncan her junior year. Prior to that, she was unsure about continuing school and discouraged about college.
In the child development pathway, she found students with similar interests and she got to experience the real world of work in her chosen field.
"Being with my preschool students gave me motivation to go to school every day and made my interest grow more and more," Acsa said. "My school has prepared me for the career I want to achieve in the future, and that is becoming a kindergarten teacher."
She said she has discovered a "true passion for teaching" and is determined to "make a difference in children's lives."
Fresno Unified Scholarship Banquet
6 p.m. May 10 at the Golden Palace
Information: (559) 457-6006
Learn more about the event
Donate to the Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund