Local Teen Receives Top Award

Vista High School senior Yessica Vargas was the recipient of the Don Diego Scholarship Foundation’s highest $10,000 award this year. She received two awards: a $5,000 FFA scholarship and the special $5,000 Spanjian Family scholarship. Don Diego Executive Director Chana Mannen said that the scholarship process this year was particularly competitive. “Selecting this year’s 12 recipients was challenging. Yet, when the time came to award the special, additional $5,000 Spanjian scholarship, the vote was unanimous: Yessica Vargas.”

Praise for Yessica abounds. Noting her nearly 4.0 GPA and many extracurricular and community service activities, Vista High Agriscience Department Chair and FFA Advisor Sara Benner said, “Yessica’s exceptional character, dedication, resilience, and perseverance enabled her to get where she is today.” Yessica’s AFJROTC instructor Colonel Vincent Lostetter, Jr. agreed, “This young woman exemplifies the exceptional character our country thirsts for in our leaders.” Yessica will attend Cal State San Marcos in the fall, where she plans to major in liberal studies, earn her teaching credential, and eventually a master’s in agriculture business. “I am truly blessed to have been awarded these two Don Diego scholarships; the money will change my entire university experience,” she said. “I am thankful for all who helped me along the way and I am eager to give back to my community.”

The Don Diego Scholarship Foundation awarded $40,500 in college scholarships to outstanding students embarking on their studies this fall. Eligibility was open to San Diego County high school seniors who participated in the San Diego County Fair and/or other activities associated with the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Since its inception in 1986, the foundation has awarded approximately $797,000 in scholarships to 177 students and in agriculture education grants. Learn more at www.dondiegoscholarship.org.