Recipients for year 2014

Ana Maria Melendez G.

Dear COUAA Officers,

I was happy to learn that I was going to be a recipient of one of the COUAA scholarships for the next academic year, and I am writing to thank you for such wonderful support towards the completion of my degree.

Attending OU for my graduate degree is contingent upon getting financial assistance as tuition and fees at OU are much higher compared to those at my university in Colombia. As you probably know, international tuition in public universities is very high, exchange rates highly unfavorable and financial aid for international students extremely scarce; particularly, for students in the human and social areas of study. All these to say I will greatly benefit from this opportunity.

I graduated from The University of Los Andes in Bogota, Colombia with, a Bachelor's degree of Social Science in Psychology and have just started my graduate education at the University of Oklahoma in the Spring of 2013 in the area of Special Education; additionally, I joined the Master's program in Social Work in the fall of 2013. I expect to further explore the positives outcomes of combining these two fields, which I am passionate about. I am motivated to help people overcome their obstacles in any level, and I find it extremely rewarding to help people realize their own potential to start making successful changes in their lives.

Being able to benefit from this kind of opportunities motivates me even more to finish my degrees and start giving back to the community. Lastly, I look forward to join COUAA in the near future to keep supporting such wonderful initiatives.

Jorge A. Quintero

I feel truly privileged to be this year's recipient for the COUAA scholarship. Receiving this wil aid me and my parents in the upcoming years with my study plans. Not having to worry as muc for the money to pay tuition is a relief. This award signifies to my parents an opportunity to ease the stress of managing the money to pay for my tuition. I can finally contribute with the paying of my own school, something I could not be able to do without your help. This is a great help to accomplish my goals in life. The constant support of COUAA throughout the previous years has been a huge support and there is no words that can describe the way I feel.

Currently I'm a senior in petroleum engineering I am graduating this upcoming may. My plans for the future is do an accelerated BS/MS program to obtain my Masters degree, also in petroleum engineering. Considering how much this scholarship is going to help me in the incoming semesters and in my life in general, I will be more than happy to help other people in need by joining the Colombian alumni association by the time I graduate. I will give back what I just received to make a smile in some other person's face. I will use all my effort plus a little more to continue on and surpassing all my expectations to be a successful person in life. This scholarship is one more reason to keep trying hard and not giving up. Again thank you for all your help, it really means a lot to me and to my parent.

Carolina Diaz

My name is Carolina Diaz, I am currently pursuing an undergraduate degree as a Petroleum Engineer and I will be graduating in May, 2014. I was one of the recipients for the COUAA scholarship this year and I am very grateful. Your financial support has enabled me to pa part of my tuition which has become a concern. By easing my worries I can fully focus on m career and finish strong.

I have thoroughly enjoyed this college experience by being a leader in many organization. Some relating to my major and others to my culture and my beliefs. I became the Petroleum Engineering representative my freshman and sophomore year. I learnt a lot about what needs of the students were and representing my class made me feel very accomplished. I then, decided to be more involved with Petroleum Engineering related organizations. I wanted to learn more about the industry. I joined the Society of Petroleum Engineers as well as the American Association of drilling engineers. I cannot express enough the importance this made to my college career. Seeing the companies first hand and wanting to belong and be part of a great industry only drove me to success. This year I took my time to focus on my culture. I was born and raised in Colombia and there is no better feeling than educating students about the beautiful country that I grew up in. I feel as though I have grown throughout my college years and I would not be able to become who I am without the help of supporters like you.

The education I acquired here at the University of Oklahoma has become a basis that I will carry forth in my career. I look forward to being a part of this prestigious industry and once again I thank you for your generosit.

Recipients for year 2010

Camilo Moreno Arango

It is really hard for me to express my gratitude for the scholarship that the OU ALUMNI Association and COUAA granted me during Colombian Night 2010; as a student at the University of Oklahoma, high-quality education is ensured, which translates in high college expenses. Nevertheless this scholarship is a great support to help me finish my Master program.

It is outstanding how the OUAA and COUAA contribute to the OU community by giving economical support unselfishly to students who need it the most; this reflects these associations believe that education is an investment to create leaders for the future.

With my graduation date getting closer, I would like to commit to be part of this noble cause by being part of COUAA and of course an OU Alum, contributing as much as possible to help future students getting their degrees at OU.

Again, I am infinitely grateful for this opportunity and promise you I will use this money wisely to finish my education successfully.

Best regards,

Camilo Moreno Arango MSc. Petroleum Engineering Candidate

Claudia Amorocho

First of all, I want to thank these associations for the efforts collecting the money for the scholarship program in benefit of the members of the Colombian Student Association at the University of Oklahoma. This is great help for us as students and the best example of gratitude not only with our University but also with our countries. I am a Petroleum Engineering graduate student, I got a bachelors degree in the same area at Universidad Industrial de Santander, back in my hometown Bucaramanga, where I spent all my life before coming to the University of Oklahoma as exchange student in 2007. I expect to complete my masters this year, and this scholarship is going to help me with the expenses of this last semester, lightening my family and my own economical efforts to afford education abroad. I really appreciate this help; this is such a motivation to continue working hard on my projects. After completing my studies at OU, I am planning to work in the Oil and Gas Industry, either in the United States or in Colombia, I feel blessed for the great education I have received at OU and I am willing to give my best in the next step of my life, as a petroleum engineer professional. Hopefully, I will be part of COUAA and give back a little bit of what I have received. Thanks again for awarding me with this scholarship, you are not only helping me, but also helping to build a new generation of well-prepared professionals. I feel proud of being part of this program, demonstrating OU Alumni and Colombians as a supportive group concerned of the importance of education as basis of a promising future. Claudia Amorocho MSc. Petroleum Engineering Candidate

Diana Ximena Vanegas

I am writing to thank everyone from the Colombian OU Alumni Association (COUAA) as well as the OU Alumni Association and all the sponsors, who in a generous manner make this scholarship program to COLSA members, not only possible but also successful. I was very happy and honored to learn that I was selected as one of the recipients of your $2000 scholarship for this year. I am from Cali, Colombia. In 2001 I moved to Bogota to pursue my bachelor degree in Environmental Engineering, and to make that possible I had to acquire a loan with ICETE, and I'm still paying it. After a couple of years working as an Environmental engineer in Bogota, Colombia, my husband and I decided to continue pursuing our professional goals and start our graduate studies at the University of Oklahoma. I am seeking a Ph.D. degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology with the Botany department and I plan to graduate in spring 2013. Right now we are expecting our first baby and this new stage in our lives comes with a lot of blessings, but at the same time, more expenses. I plan to use the funds of the scholarship granted to me from COUAA and the OU alumni association to cover a significant amount of my bursar balance for the fall 2010 and spring 2011 semesters, as well for the summer 2011 term. Thus with this scholarship you have lightened my financial burden which allows me to focus more on the most important aspect of school, learning. I also want to highlight that this award represents not only a financial aid when it is needed, but recognition for a good academic standing and an incentive to keep pursuing my professional goals. Again, thanks to OU Alumni Association for helping with the COUAA scholarship program and for trusting me as an honored recipient of the scholarship. Your generosity has inspired me to help others and give back to the community. I hope one day I will be able to help students achieve their goals just as you have helped me. Best regards, Diana Ximena Vanegas Graduate Research Assistant Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of Arts and Sciences

Juan G. Arango

It gives me immense pleasure to thank you all, for the COUAA scholarship awarded to me as a financial aid to complete my Environmental Engineering degree. I humbly accept your scholarship. I will use this scholarship only for the betterment of my education and career and thereby help my parents that are paying for my expenses at OU. I am from Bogota Colombia and the fact that I am an international student makes my life more expensive, but thanks to you it is going to be easy. Yours sincerely, Juan G. Arango

Juan Posada

I feel immense gratitude for being one of the scholarship recipients given by COUAA. I give many thanks to COUAA members, and special thanks to those who contributed to the scholarship fund. This financial help will definitely make a difference in my academic career, and will help me and many others achieve our educational goals more successfully. I also hope that the efforts for helping brilliant Colombian students in need at the University of Oklahoma will never cease, but instead reach many others who will definitely need a friendly and generous hand. Special thanks to Mrs. Yoana Walschap who through the years has unselfishly given every bit of support to those who have had none, and has made of the Colombian community at OU, an exemplary case of what us, Colombians, are capable of. And to everyone who somehow helped and continues helping towards this cause, many thanks. My name is Juan Posada, I was born in the gorgeous city of Medellin, Antioquia, and I am most proud to be Colombian. Best Regards Juan Posada

Juan Ramon Torres Trujillo

Thank you for selecting me as recipient of the PETROGROUP scholarship. Your support will help me reach my goal of graduating in one year with an interdisciplinary Master of Science in Bioenergy. I am from Ibague, Colombia and I have a B.S in Environmental Science from El Bosque University, and a M.S. in Sustainable Energy Development from the University of Calgary. I also came to the University of Oklahoma in 2005 as exchange student, and worked in a research project in Microbiology, learning cultivation and molecular techniques that I found fascinating. Coming back to OU has challenged me to use my background and research how to enhance the production of butanol from a microbiology standpoint. As consequence, I have had to take extra classes to be able to cope with the fundamentals of microbiology and bioengineering, which has extended the academic load, and the resulting costs and time required for graduation. Thanks to your scholarship I will be able to afford taking more courses in the coming semesters to graduate sooner. This is a huge incentive to keep my academic progress and my leadership activities as President of the Oklahoma Energy Club, and as an active member of the Colombian Student Association at OU. I would like to thank everyone from the Colombian OU Alumni Association as well as the sponsors, who in a generous manner make this scholarship program possible. This award represents not only a financial aid when it is needed, but also an incentive to keep pursuing my professional goals and to maintain the passion of learning and participating in the COLSA activities, which make life more enjoyable here in Norman, OK. I am convinced that the best way to show my gratitude is through an excellent academic standing and expressing my commitment as a COLSA member. I am conscious that one day I will be on the other side, contributing to the Colombian OU Alumni Association as well. With gratitude, Juan Ramon Torres Trujillo

Monica Maez

I'm Monica Maez a third year member of the Colombian Student Association and a chemical engineering-Biotechnology student. I am also honored to be one of the recipients of the COUAA Scholarship. I was born in Bogota, Colombia and moved to the United States 9 years ago. Four years ago I attended my first Colombian night and from that day on I knew I wanted to be part of COLSA. The following year I was admitted to the university, and every year since then I have had the joy to be part of such a close group of people that I no longer look at as just an association but a strong community of friends and family. I'm very grateful to be part of such a strong community and I thank you COUAA and sponsors for the scholarship that you have awarded me with. This scholarship is of great help to my family and me to reduce the total tuition costs the following academic year. I look forward to the day when I will be part of the COUAA and are able to provide others with the same joy and relief that you have provided me with. Once again I express my gratitude for giving me the honor to be a recipient of the COUAA Scholarship. Sincerely, Monica Maez

Nelson Osorio

I am deeply thankful with the scholarship the Colombian OU Alumni Association (COUAA) and the OU-Alumni Association (OUAA) awarded to me at the Colombian Night 2010. This scholarship has more than an economic value; it is the incentive to continue giving the best in pursuing my goals in the academy and strengthen my belief that it is possible to succeed in the land of dreams. I am from the city of Pereira, at the west of Colombia; the region where the best coffee in the world is harvested, and I came to the United States in 2005 looking for opportunities for me and my family. COUAA- OUAA scholarship is making a positive difference in my current financial situation affected by the economic downturn; it is a relief, giving me peace of mind to accomplish my studies, covering the university expenses for a couple of semesters, and giving me the possibility of extra time to share with my family. Thanks COUAA and OUAA for your support. Nelson Osorio Petroleum Engineering Graduate Student

Pablo Barajas

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the generosity of COUAA and OU Alumni Association in funding the scholarship that I received during the 9th Colombian Night 2010 "Amazing Faces, Amazing Places". I feel very fortunate that my credentials gave me the honor to be the recipient of this award. I am currently a graduate student majoring in natural gas engineering and management, and I expect to graduate in December 2010 with a MS. This is my second master after I graduated in May of 2009 with a MS in Mechanical Engineering. This summer I will be interning H&P international Drilling Company and next semester I will conclude coursework and my master's thesis,I have been working as a graduate research assistant with the University of Oklahoma for the last three years in various projects regarding oil and gas production, processing and utilization. As a result, I have published and presented papers in different symposia, conference and journals. In addition to my academic responsibilities, I am a university leader working in extracurricular activities as the president of the Colombian Student Association (COLSA). This leadership role has been a rewarding experience that has extraordinarily improved my communication skills and has taught me to efficiently direct teamwork environments. Thank you again for your contribution that made my scholarship possible. This financial aid is important for the completion of my studies at the University of Oklahoma. I commit to pay back this allocation after my graduation in order to help the academic success of future outstanding generations that will keep COLSA growing at the University of Oklahoma. Sincerely, Pablo Barajas

Walmy Cuello Jimenez

First of all I would like to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation to the COUAA officers and sponsors for all the generosity and support that this organization is offering to the entire COLSA members, and as such encouraging us to succeed in any field of study. My name is Walmy Cuello Jimenez, I was born in Chiriguana, Cesar, a small town in northern Colombia. My mother is a schoolteacher, my father is a farmer, and I am the seventh of eight children. Both my parents have done everything possible to support their children. It has been a difficult task for them to support me financially during my exchange year in 2008 and currently as I pursue my Master's degree at the University of Oklahoma considering that the family falls in Colombia's social stratum Level 2. However, I have done everything possible to reduce my financial burden on them, and of course that this scholarship will substantially help me in order to achieve my goals at this University. Moreover, this scholarship will considerably reduce the amount of tuition and fees charges on my name and it will also push me to reach much higher goals. Once again thanks a lot for the all the financial support and gratitude offered to us. Best Regards. Walmy Cuello Jimenez School of Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering