By Tracy Correa Lopez
PG&E today (Sept. 14) announced that 40 students from hometowns across its service area will receive scholarships totaling $250,000 from the 2022 Better Together STEM Scholarship Program.
The PG&E Corporation Foundation (The Foundation) funds the scholarships. This year, The Foundation is sponsoring 20 scholarships of $10,000 each and 20 scholarships of $2,500 each. The scholarships are given to students pursuing a degree in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines. STEM education fosters ingenuity, creativity, and experimentation, leading to new ideas, innovations, and technological advancements that can have global impact.
Scholarship recipient Ariana Rajabi of Clovis will use her award toward her studies at California State University, Fresno, where she is majoring in mechanical engineering.
“I have had the dream of becoming an aerospace and mechanical engineer for as long as I can remember,” said Rajabi. “I have a family of six, and all three of my siblings plans to attend college. So, this award will help myself and my parents out significantly. I truly appreciate this, and I will continue to work hard and accomplish my goals.”
Scholar Peter Pham of San Jose is attending University of California, Berkeley and majoring in environmental science. He said his STEM-focused education will allow him to help others.
“My long-term goal is to become a physician and public servant to help our communities. PG&E has decided to be part of my journey through this award. I will make every penny count and make you all proud,” said Pham, a first-generation college student.
Scholarships are awarded based on academic achievement, demonstrated participation and leadership in school and community activities, and financial need.
“PG&E and The PG&E Corporation Foundation are inspired and encouraged by this next generation of innovators, doers, and thinkers in California—and we’re glad to do our part to help alleviate some of the financial burden for families in our hometowns so these students can pursue their STEM-based higher education goals,” said Carla Peterman, PG&E Corporation’s executive vice president, Corporate Affairs, and chair of the board of The PG&E Corporation Foundation.
Scholarship recipients must plan to enroll in full-time undergraduate study for the entire 2022-2023 academic year and be seeking their first undergraduate degree at an accredited four-year institution in California, or at a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) anywhere in the United States. HBCU eligibility was added this year in response to a trend in applications from high-achieving students admitted to HBCUs, none of which are in California.
Supporting local scholars
Since 2012, the Better Together STEM Scholarship Program has awarded more than $6.7 million to accomplished students. These charitable donations come from PG&E shareholders, not PG&E customers.
In addition to the Better Together STEM Scholarship Program, PG&E's 11 employee resource groups (ERGs) and three engineering networking groups (ENGs) award scholarships to help offset the cost of higher education. The funds are raised entirely through employee donations, employee fundraising events and PG&E’s employee giving program, the Campaign for the Community. Since 1989, more than $5 million ERG scholarships have been received by thousands of recipients.
Here is the full list of this year's Better Together STEM Scholarship recipients:
- Manuel Aguiano — Fresno (Fresno County)
- Miranda Bada — Loomis (Placer County)
- Alessandro Barrera — Novato (Marin County)
- Brody Breeden — Kelseyville (Lake County)
- Miriam Brody — Woodside (San Mateo County)
- Connor Brophy — Pacific Grove (Monterey County)
- Darius Cuevas — Parlier (Fresno County)
- Nicholas DiFuria — Clovis (Fresno County)
- Manuel Gozzi — Carmel Valley (Monterey County)
- Ella Heimbrodt — Novato (Marin County)
- Alexis Herfurth — Sonora (Tuolumne County)
- Crystal Hernandez — Antioch (Contra Costa County)
- Janae Hutson — Bakersfield (Kern County)
- Megan Jacob — San Ramon (Contra Costa County)
- Joseph Kavanaugh — Pebble Beach (Monterey County)
- Hillary Khuu — Hercules (Contra Costa County)
- Steven Le — San Jose (Santa Clara County)
- Kelly Lee — Fresno (Fresno County)
- Benise Limon — Concord (Contra Costa County)
- Samuel Machuca — Bakersfield (Kern County)
- Raef Makrai — San Mateo (San Mateo County)
- Brayden Martinez — Ukiah (Mendocino County)
- Bryce Montgomery — Pacific Grove (Monterey County)
- Mitchell Peterson — Oakland (Alameda County)
- Victor Petrov — Union City (Alameda County)
- Christina Pham — San Jose (Santa Clara County)
- Peter Pham — San Jose (Santa Clara County)
- Antonia Piercey — Clovis (Fresno County)
- Jude Quirinale — Carmel Valley (Monterey County)
- Ariana Rajabi — Clovis (Fresno County)
- Youssef Salib — Bakersfield (Kern County)
- Maxim Saschin — Rohnert Park (Sonoma County)
- Amanda Sayaseng — Daly City (San Mateo County)
- Owen Scott — Ripon (San Joaquin County)
- William Slaybaugh Dappen — Saint Helena (Napa County)
- Sarah Solorio — Sacramento (Sacramento County)
- Jonathan Terbush — Yuba City (Sutter County)
- Ronan Williams — Boonville (Mendocino County)
- Madison Wong — Fremont (Alameda County)
- Ethan Xie — Antioch (Contra Costa County)
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