Ernesto Reyez-Hernandez, Class of 2014

My name is Ernesto Reyes-Hernandez and I am thankful to be one of this year’s Bridges Academy Scholars. I am a sophomore here at the University of San Diego pursuing a degree in International Relations and Theology with a concentration in Latin America. I am originally from Cuba and I moved to Las Vegas three years ago where I attended Palo Verde High School and graduated in 2010. Applying for college was an exciting time. I applied to four universities: Georgetown, George Washington University, American University and USD. I decided to attend USD because of its incredible program in International Relations and Theology and its strategic location just a few minutes away from the border with Mexico. I came to USD without having visited before and I fell in love with the school and the sense of community I felt throughout campus.

I am passionate about foreign politics and USD has given me many opportunities to explore my interests further and grow as an ethical and compassionate leader. Last Spring, I interned for the Trans-Border Institute which allowed me to meet prominent leaders such as former President of Mexico Vicente Fox and the UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict Radhika Coomaraswamy, while learning about the relations between the United States and Mexico. I presented the research I conducted on the correlation between economic development and violence at the US-Mexico border during my internship at the 2011 Creative Collaborations Conference. I am also involved with Associated Students, USD’s student government organization, was elected an Academic Senator representing the College of Arts and Sciences and I was appointed Speaker Pro Tempore of the Senate. I am involved with other organizations on campus such as University Ministry, where I serve as a Eucharistic Minister, USD Young Democrats and the Preceptorial Assistant program.

I plan to join the Peace Corps after graduation. I believe that this would be a wonderful opportunity to experience the world and live in community with peoples from different cultures. I also plan to continue my studies in International Affairs in a postgraduate program and join the United States Foreign Service.

Throughout my academic career at USD, I have aimed for excellence. This scholarship will be instrumental in my path towards achieving my goals here at USD. I sincerely appreciate your kind contributions and continued support. I once again thank you for your generosity.