‘I Was Able to Overcome What I Imagined to Be Impossible’

Josielyn Bustamante plans to become a civil engineer, in order to help others.

“My aspiration,” Josielyn explains, “is to one day be able to help communities meet their basic human needs.”

“Being a civil engineer will allow me to be able to design and build ways to facilitate transportation and access to water, such as designing roads and bridges for underdeveloped communities.”

Financial barriers have created challenges for her, but she has worked hard to overcome them.

“I decided,” she explains, “to apply for scholarships left and right.”

Josielyn was particularly interested in the Kennedy-King Memorial Scholarship, a $10,000 award for students who have unmet financial needs and come from under-represented minority groups.

“The scholarship application process is one that I will not forget,” she says, “because it was not easy.”

In addition to the application, applicants must provide three letters of recommendations and complete an interview. Josielyn had to do all this while also doing her school work, looking for internships and applying to four-year schools.

“It took hard work, dedication, and some sleepless nights,” she says, “but with the help of my close family, friends, and staff at CCC, I was able to overcome what I imagined to be impossible. Multiple staff members at CCC devoted their time in making sure my application did not go unnoticed.”

“The ‘fix this-that,’ and the, ‘add here and there,’ really made a difference.”

Josielyn won that Kennedy-King Scholarship, as well as the ASU Achievement, Dean Lesher and Brandon Schnurr Memorial Scholarships from the CCC Foundation.

This fall, she will begin pursuing a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at California Polytechnic State University.

“I am proud to be a woman pursuing a career in STEM,” she says. “Actually, I would like to rephrase that – I am proud to be a Latina woman pursuing a career in civil engineering.”

And, she says with pride, “I feel honored. These scholarships will help me succeed.”

“If there is one thing I learned in my six years at CCC, it’s that it takes more than materials to build a strong foundation. Every penny earned through these scholarships will go towards helping me build a better tomorrow.”