Newsletter Article

Claudia Linares: Rising to the Challenges

"My first quarter here at UW has been very exciting but also very challenging!"

     - Claudia Linares, Psychology Junior and Martin Scholar

Photo: Claudia Linares
Photo: Claudia Linares

Claudia Linares is someone who rises to a challenge.  Having just completed her first quarter here at UW, Claudia has already taken part in a community volunteer opportunity via her Psychobiology of Women class, has joined the UW TRiO program, has been hired as a tutor at the Odegaard Writing Center, and was admitted to the psychology major.  It's no wonder that this bright and engaged young woman was awarded a Martin Family Foundation Honors Scholarship upon transferring to UW. 

The Martin Scholarship Program enables community college students in Washington State to complete their undergraduate degrees at the University of Washington.  Scholars are chosen for superior strength of character, intellectual ability, leadership, community service, and sense of purpose.  While a student at Highline Community College, Claudia volunteered as a mentor with the organization Communities in Schools, worked as a writing tutor, and was a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.  She also volunteered in the Emergency Department at Saint Francis Hospital, in Federal Way. 

It was the experience at Saint Francis, coupled with a sudden illness in her family, that refocused Claudia's academic interests toward the field of psychology.  During her first year at Highline, Claudia's mother was hospitalized due to a stress induced illness.  "This experience, of course, was very painful for me," recalls Claudia, "but it also served as an inspiration to not only help my mom cope with stress, but also help others to do the same."  Post-UW plans include pursuing a graduate degree in health psychology.

Now facing a new range of both opportunities and challenges here at UW, this daughter of immigrants from El Salvador is ready to see what's next.  She also has good advice for other students who are about to make the transition from community college to the UW.  Claudia urges her fellow students to take advantage of all of the resources UW has to offer, to form study groups, and to make as many friends as possible.  "Your time is precious," she urges, " so manage it effectively and wisely!"