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Setting an Example

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    Veronica Luna (in white shirt, center) stands with high school students who are entering Southwestern's Upward Bound program this fall. (Photo by Maritza Robles)

Southwestern graduate now works for the program that made her education possible

As a student at Granger High School, Veronica Luna saw how the  Upward Bound program helped prepare her brother for college.

So Luna also applied for the program, which is designed to help students from East View, Georgetown, Jarrell and Granger high schools become the first in their family to attend college.

Luna excelled in the Upward Bound program and was awarded a four-year scholarship that allowed her to attend Southwestern and graduate in May with a major in communication studies and a minor in education.

“If it had not been for Upward Bound I would not have graduated from Southwestern because Upward Bound helped me learn about the FASFA and learn about applying for schools,” Luna said. “Plus, I received the scholarship from Southwestern and with that I was able to attend all four years and even go abroad to London for a semester.”

Today, Luna is back in the Upward Bound office serving as the academic advisor for the 50 students in the program.

“I feel like my own personal experience with the Upward Bound program allows me to relate to the students on a deeper personal level,” Luna said. “I hope that through my success at Southwestern, these students can see that college is possible for them.”

Luna helped select the students who are entering the program this fall and spent the summer preparing the returning scholars for the coming school year.

“I want them to see that it is possible to be first-generation college students and be successful,” Luna said. “I want them to go to college and graduate with a degree so they can go out and get a job they are passionate about.”

Luna is currently looking for Southwestern students of all majors who would like to help tutor her Upward Bound scholars on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday afternoons from 4-5:30 p.m. Students who are interested should contact her at  lunav@southwestern.edu or call (512) 863-1174.

−Maritza Robles