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Congratulations to the Rise Scholarship Recipients

The Rise Program is excited to announce our 2020 college scholarship recipients. This year, the committee selected three recipients who demonstrated outstanding academic and personal growth.

While we were not able to celebrate this achievement in person, we are incredibly proud of each of our students. It was a historic time to graduate, and we have been amazed by the creativity that this special Class of 2020 has used to celebrate their accomplishment. We know that our students will thrive regardless of current events, and we are excited to see where their next adventure leads.

Juan Castro | Award Amount: $1000 | Attending University of California, San Diego (UCSD)

“I had the great privilege of meeting actual Caltech students and getting advice from them about higher education. I distinctly remember the conversations I would have with my Wednesday tutor, Adrian, about quantum mechanics, multivariable calculus, and the college application process. He even told me about his process for applying to colleges and how he eventually ended up at Caltech, explaining everything from filling out the FAFSA to writing his essays for Caltech. With my Thursday tutor, Felipe, I remember conversations about special relativity, learning how to use Wolfram Mathematica, and topics that are introduced to students in higher-level physics classes. He also told me about his process for applying to colleges, but also described the weird transition from high school into a highly selective university. I had never discussed any of these topics with other high school students and getting the opportunity to interact with Caltech students (the geniuses of the future) on a weekly basis and discussing these topics is nothing short of amazing".

Adolfo Murillo Carrada | Award Amount: $1000 | Attending University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB)

“As I received help from my tutors, I decided to ask them about their experience at Caltech and what advice they could give me for college. The most common piece of advice I got is to not leave work until the last minute, which is something I am constantly guilty of. Another service that my tutors provided was helping me write my college essays and answering my questions about college. They would help me proofread and give me advice on things I should add or omit from my essays. They would also debunk common misconceptions I had heard about college. For example, I used to believe that colleges took the financial situation of students into account and made that one of the key factors influencing their decision to admit a student. Thanks to their advice, I felt a little less stressed about the college application process.”

Henry Vargas | Award Amount: $1000 | Attending Pasadena City College

“The tutors participating in the Rise program are amazing. They understand that communication between a tutor and a tutee is imperative. It would be an understatement to say that all of the tutors I’ve had the opportunity to meet have been an enormous help to my personal life, as well as my academic life.

The Rise Program has not only provided the assistance necessary for my success, but also improved my communication skills. Meeting new people, especially people who are older than me, has proven challenging. But because of my participation in the Rise Program, I’ve become comfortable and accustomed to meeting new people.”

The Rise Program scholarships are made possible by the Tom M. Apostol Fund for Science and Math Outreach in honor of Tom Apostol, a Caltech Mathematics professor, recognized for the clarity of his exposition of mathematical and scientific concepts. Contribute to the Tom M. Apostol Fund for Science and Math Outreach at:

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