SOCORRO, N.M., May 9, 2001 -- Since 1966, the Socorro branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) has held annual local fundraisers, such as the popular Visitas de Navidad, in order to award a scholarship each year to a young woman deemed to be an "academically outstanding student at New Mexico Tech."
This year, however, the local chapter of AAUW has decided to award scholarships to two deserving Tech students: Elizabeth Rose Fernandez, a sophomore majoring in physics with an astrophysics option; and Shannon Gaddy, a sophomore majoring in materials engineering.
Fernandez, a graduate of Albuquerque's St. Pius X High School, is the daughter of Joe and Rose Fernandez of Albuquerque. Gaddy, a graduate of Gallup High School, is the daughter of Leroy and Margaret Gaddy of Gallup.
"I like the small-campus setting of New Mexico Tech, which makes me feel like I know everyone here," says Fernandez, who currently serves as secretary of the Tech Astronomy Club. "Tech professors are easily accessible and talking with them is always enjoyable.
"Even as a freshman at Tech, I had the opportunity to work at the Very Large Array radiotelescope," she adds, "and also had an opportunity to start up a Creative Writing Club."
"It's been a challenging, yet rewarding, educational experience at New Mexico Tech," says Gaddy. "New Mexico Tech is a small engineering school, which is a perfect size for me. And, it has an exceptional faculty."
AAUW is a national organization dedicated to encouraging higher education for women.