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Continuing its Legacy of Student Support – the Dean’s Endowed Student Teaching Scholarship

Published November 12, 2020

Each year, an eligible College of Education student is awarded the Dean's Endowed Student Teaching Scholarship, an award that supports a future teacher during their semester of student teaching. The scholarship, funded through annual support raised with a year-end appeal letter, was conceived by College of Education Distinguished Alumna, Marnos Lelesi (‘82 ‘83) and awarded this year to Single Subject Credential student Melissa Cruz. Here, both Lelesi and Cruz discuss why scholarships are so critical to student success.


Leading this award’s endowment committee, Lelesi acknowledges how vital it is for student teachers to be able to focus on their studies and teaching, without lack of funds being a source of stress. “We need to support our students financially so that they can pursue their education goals and achieve success without fear or distractions because of lack of funds. It has been so heartwarming to hear how our funds have allowed our recipients to continue their education because of our support. The students are motivated even more when they know that they are supported by people who care about them.”

Melissa Cruz
Melissa Cruz, Dean's Endowed Student Teaching Scholarship Awardee 

This year’s awardee, Melissa Cruz is currently a student teacher in Orange County where she teaches 11th grade American literature and 9th grade freshman honors English. For Cruz, “Receiving the Dean’s Student Teaching Endowed Scholarship has really helped offset the cost of student teaching!” Acknowledging how challenging it is to balance student teaching with work, Cruz said “…this scholarship put aside any hesitance I felt about supporting myself through my student teaching.”

Lelesi, sharing how contributing to this fund has personally impacted her said, “I am thrilled that through the efforts of the committee that was formed and the staff, we are making a difference in the lives of deserving students. I love hearing the backgrounds and the dreams of the selected recipients of the scholarships. I have always been so proud to be an educator and feel privileged to have played a part in the Dean's Endowed Student Teaching Award.”

Declare your support of the Dean’s Endowed Student Teaching Scholarship.