Impact


SLI has served more than 80 scholars since 2012 at Harrisonburg and John Handley High Schools. SLI has awarded $116,000 in SLI college scholarship awards and $24,000 in SLI computer awards to its graduating high school students, and more than $9,000 in tuition support for students to enroll in college dual enrollment courses while in high school. 

SLI scholars have attended: Blue Ridge Community College | Bridgewater College | Eastern Mennonite University | Eastern Nazarene College | George Mason University | Harvard University | James Madison University | Lord Fairfax Community College | Old Dominion University | Shenandoah University | University of Virginia | Virginia Tech


SLI scholar testimonials:

With the college preparation and mentorship, SLI has helped me feel more confident in taking initiative on my own. The college assignments handed to us helped me achieve more in my regular classes by analyzing more thoroughly based on what I had learned from SLI. The community that SLI helps bring together among the Hispanic students, over all, inspires me to become an example for all first generation immigrants that are in my position. By helping me acquire resources, such as college trips, informational programs about college, and helping us discover our passion, SLI helps me set the example of a first generation scholar.

Yamillet Salazar-Espiridion, John Handley High School class of 2019

SLI is important to me because it has helped shape me into a leader I am today. SLI is a way for students to feel like they have people who believe in them and are there to push them to their highest potential. With SLI I have been able to critically think beyond an education that high school offers. SLI has helped me believe in myself to achieve my dreams and make them into reality despite any obstacles that may come my way. I have learned to not only be a responsible leader for myself but for my community as well. Before I started SLI I was very active in community service but my passion for helping others has grown from the very moment I initiated my intellectual growth in SLI. | Throughout my years in SLI, I have been able to grow academically through college seminars. I am a huge supporter of these seminars because it allows students to analyze and comprehend education apart from what your regular high school classes offer. With college seminars, I have been able to learn valuable skills that I will definitely carry with me for the rest of my life.

Emily Hernandez-Ventura, John Handley High School class of 2019

One of the most important things SLI gave to me was a window to the college world and show me that it was an option. I, as a Latino, still have the option to pursue my education and dreams. | SLI has always encouraged me to push myself for those harder challenges in the classroom and out. Talking with people that come from the same place as your really makes you realize that you aren’t alone and makes you more comfortable with your own voice. Being comfortable with who I am and where I come from boosted my confidence alongside my ability to lead and represent. | SLI gave me the opportunity to ask questions and interact with college students and professors. For a lot of people the transition from high school to college can be somewhat scary. SLI removed that fear because I was already familiar with how to tackle the college transition and life. Taking that fear away is a huge step in moving forward in the pursuit of your education.

Jozhel Salazar, John Handley High School class of 2017, currently pursuing a degree in civil engineering