Kansas City’s university awards seven for 2018
Ruby Rios of Roeland Park, Kansas, a spring 2018 Bishop Miege High School graduate, has been named a University of Missouri-Kansas City Trustees’ Scholar.
When Rios begins computer science at UMKC in the fall, she will receive a scholarship valued at $60,000 over four years. Her award is supported by the UMKC Board of Trustees, the founder of the scholarship program.
Rios was named one of Kansas City’s “30 Under 30” by Ink Magazine in 2017 and graduated in the top 4 percent of her class. She was a member of the FIRST Robotics Team, Girls Who Code Club, Campus Ministry Team, Women of Miege Club and National Speech and Debate Association. She was a cybersecurity intern in the Cerner Scholars program, a speaker and event planner for TedxKC, a teaching assistant for KC STEM Alliance and co-founded the KC STEMinists tech program.
In the essay submitted to the Trustees’ Scholars selection committee, Rios said a significant experience for her was meeting Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate.
“Meeting Malala opened my eyes to the global problem of girls’ access to education, and she inspired me to make a difference in my own community,” Rios said. “I became determined to counteract this gender gap by creating more opportunities for girls to learn STEM concepts in a supportive environment.”
Since she met Yousafzai, Rios started two “Girls Who Code” clubs and organized STEM events ranging from day-long camps for Girls Scouts to multi-month programs. Last summer she traveled to Malawi as part of a United Nations-sponsored STEM camp to address global issues with girls’ STEM education.
“As a UMKC student, I plan to continue working with local business and civic leaders, in coordination with the KC STEM Alliance, to expand these educational initiatives even further.”
The Trustees’ Scholarship provides educational fees and on-campus room and board for the first two years. In the third and fourth years, the package provides educational fees and $2,000 for room and board. Each Trustees’ Scholar also receives $500 toward books each year.
To qualify as Trustees’ Scholars, students must meet at least two of the following three criteria: score a minimum ACT Composite of 30, rank in the top five percent of the graduating class, or have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or more in a 17-class core curriculum. Trustees’ Scholars must enroll full time, be seeking an undergraduate degree and commit to living on campus for the first two years.
The UMKC Trustees’ Scholars Program is unique in that it aligns students closely with corporate sponsors, who give students access to their professional knowledge and experience, insight into the inner workings of the company or institution they represent, and a strong mentor relationship throughout the college experience. Students have opportunities to network and find internships or jobs through the Trustees and their connections in the community.
The UMKC Board of Trustees is a non-profit organization established by civic and community leaders to support the University. Members advocate on the University’s behalf, provide community feedback and forge partnerships to help the University achieve its strategic priorities and financial objectives.