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Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars celebrate graduation from ASU

Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars

Left to right: Robert Berger, vice president of programs for the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust; Belen Gonzalez, Nina Mason Pulliam Trust program director for Arizona; Andrew Patrick, Zakeeyah Habeel; Yesenia Beltran; and Michael Mendel, an Arizona program officer for the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust, at an event celebrating new scholar graduates.

December 12, 2016

Families of three Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars celebrated the upcoming graduation of their family members. Patrick Andrew, BS, social work; Yesenia Beltran, BS, journalism and Zakeeyah Habeel, BS, speech and hearing science took part in a ceremony held at the ASU Student Center in downtown Phoenix. A fourth Legacy Scholar, Stacey Lamanillao, BS, finance, was unable to attend.

Each scholar was recognized for their achievement with a framed certificate. Students also presented a member of their family with their ASU graduation stole as a token of their appreciation. 

"We are extremely proud of these students," said Jo Ann Martinez, the director of Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars program at Arizona State University. "This was a monumental task for our scholars, and we want to recognize them and their families for achieving such a tremendous goal."

The Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars program provides long-term financial support for individuals who may not otherwise qualify for traditional academic scholarships. Those who become scholars belong to one of three types of groups: a parent pursuing a college degree; someone with a physical disability; and former foster youth who may have no one to assist paying for college. The Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars program also funds students at the Maricopa Community Colleges, Indiana University and Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana.

The program is financed by the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust based in Phoenix. Nina Mason Pulliam was the wife of former Arizona Republic and Indianapolis Star publisher Eugene Pulliam. She was a strong advocate for improving the lives of children and families in Arizona and Indiana. The trust also supports the protection of animals and habitats in the two states. Last year, it provided more than $17 million to 193 nonprofit and educational institutions.

Yesenia Beltran

A family member takes a photo of Cronkite School graduate Yesenia Beltran, her mother, brother, and niece at a ceremony celebrating the achievements of Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars.

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