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Four Dallas ISD Academic Stars Get Full Ride to Attend Jindal School

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Four seniors who graduated from Dallas Independent School District high schools have literally signed up to become the inaugural cohort of The University of Texas at Dallas’ Jindal Young Scholars Program.

This Jindal School program guarantees tuition, room, board and expenses for four years for qualified Dallas ISD students who commit to earn a JSOM degree in a timely fashion.

From left: Giovanny Lopez, Jason Manzala, Mike Campos and Oscar Urrutia. 

Mike Campos, Giovanny Lopez and Jason Manzala, all from the School of Business and Management at Yvonne A. Ewell Townview Center, and Oscar Urrutia, from W.T. White High School, signed pledges in May to enroll at UT Dallas this fall. Campos, Lopez and Manzala will major in finance, while Urrutia will study global business.

Oscar Urrutia signing his JYSP letter.

Billy Schewee, director of the young scholars program, spent the previous year putting the program in place and recruiting the initial cohort.

“I’m proud to be a part of this program that provides this kind of opportunity and excited that this became a reality,” Schewee said.

Jindal Scholars must maintain their grades, participate in program activities and involve their parents whenever possible. In addition, they will serve as the first ambassadors of the program.

“By being the first cohort, we provide inspiration and that leadership that everybody’s asking for,” Urrutia said. “Everything I do is based on goals that I want to achieve. I always set short-term and long-term goals for myself. I want to be successful in college. After college, I want to go out there in the world, be a leader and inspire people to believe in themselves.”

Campos signing his JYSP letter accompanied by his family.

Campos is determined to finish strong. “I’m ready to do it overall,” he said. “Everybody here had to do a whole lot of work just to get to this position. There’s nothing that’s going to keep us from continuing that work in college.”

Lopez offered advice to those who would follow him. “If you put in the effort and work hard, it will pay off in the long run,” he said.

Manzala credited his parents for instilling in him a work ethic. His family also attended the event.

“We tried to mentor him — tell him what’s good for him and what’s the best to go with,” said his father, Edmund. “We taught him to be his own man and be mindful for what he’s going to be. In the future, he can help somebody like (he is being helped) now.”

“By being the first cohort, we provide inspiration and that leadership that everybody's asking for. Everything I do is based on goals that I want to achieve. ... I want to be successful in college. After college, I want to go out there in the world, be a leader and inspire people to believe in themselves.”

The very first JYSP cohort whooshing with Temoc.

Dr. Hasan Pirkul, Jindal School dean and Caruth Chair, said he was grateful that his vision was finally coming to fruition after 10 years of planning. Part of the vision includes substantial funding from community and corporate partners, such as State Farm.

Representatives from State Farm, one of the major donors to the initiative, attended the event.

“We have a commitment to building safer, stronger, better-educated communities,” said Darren Allred, philanthropy manager for State Farm. “The Jindal Young Scholars Program is the absolute definition of that. It’s starting with the children who are going to make a difference for many, many years to come.”

Jimmie Markham

Jimmie Markham brings a widely-ranging life and professional experience to his job as a communications manager at JSOM.  As an infantryman in the U.S. Army, he learned to “improvise, adapt and overcome” and that “no battle plan survives first contact with the enemy.”  He’s been dealing with the unexpected ever since and, in doing so, has become a skilled and dedicated communications/marketing/customer-service and sales-support professional with nearly 20 years of experience using improvisational, critical-thinking, technical and people skills to advance the interests of external and internal clients. A BA in Art & Performance (creative writing emphasis) from UT Dallas helped polish his natural predilection and passion for the written word. Read more articles

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