Just this past October, Jenni Muñoz (class of 2017) was searching the world wide web for scholarship opportunities. During her search she came across the Hispanic Heritage Youth Award, an non profit organization that “…promotes cultural pride, accomplishment, and the great promise of the community through public awareness campaigns seen by millions”.

(Source: http://hispanicheritage.org/about/our-history/)

“There are 8 categories and so some of them are like business and management and then like health and human services or whatever. There is like a community service award too and stuff like that. There’s also one that celebrates a parent or a mentor that has been exceptional. They like to celebrate just any accomplishments. There were, I think, like 20,000 applicants this year and there were only 20 in each region,” said Jenni.

Muñoz then found herself applying to the “Innovation and Technology” category for the Chicago” region. When asked about her reasoning behind the category she responded with:

“I did Robotics for 3 years and I worked for Girls Who Code. I was a student and then a teaching assistant. That’s this program in Chicago where I spent 7 weeks each summer.”

Not expecting to win anything, Muñoz explains how she felt when she was awarded a Bronze medal at the “18th Annual Chicago Youth Awards Ceremony” on Thursday, November 3rd.

“I was pretty shocked because I knew there was a lot of applications,” said a wide-smiling Muñoz.

Muñoz in middle
Muñoz in middle

By Kevin McNulty

Kevin McNulty teaches English and Mass Media Studies at Penn High School. He advises the Penn News Network and manages the PNN Studio and news room. For more information, navigate your browser to www.massmediastudies.net.