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Photo: Jennifer Muñoz

Colgate-Palmolive Haz La U Scholarship changed Jennifer Muñoz’s life

Colgate-Palmolive Haz La U, annual education grant open to Hispanic applicants until Nov. 13. Read about 2016 grant winner Jennifer Muñoz journey to Higher Ed

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Colgate-Palmolive is now accepting applicants for Haz La U scholarship, an educational grant program for Hispanic high school seniors. 

Haz La U will award 31 educational grants totaling $100,000 to Hispanic high school students that have demonstrated academic excellence and been active members of their community. Applications for the 2023-2024 academic year will close on November 13, 2022. 

In the past twelve years, Haz La U has awarded over $900,000 in scholarships to more than 400 Hispanic students pursuing a higher education degree. 

Photo: Jennifer Muñoz

Colgate is proud to highlight Jennifer Muñoz, 2016 Haz La U scholarship recipient and graduate from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Jennifer is a first-generation, low-income student, who researched different opportunities to finance her studies, at times feeling it was unattainable.

“I applied to Haz La U because I wanted to prove to myself that I was capable of more than I gave myself credit for,” explained Jennifer. 

She graduated with a B.A. in Political Science with an emphasis in International Relations. She credits the smooth college application to the assistance of counselors and extensive research on transfer credit policy. 

Muñoz is now a healthcare QA Analyst in logistics, handling time-critical shipments to save thousands of lives. 

“I did not graduate in computer science, so being able to learn and adapt has been crucial to my role,” Jennifer emphasized. “ I love being able to wake up and know that what I’m doing is making a difference in someone’s life.” 

As many students who pursue a higher education degree, Jennifer was confronted with questions about her life in five and ten years. She wondered if a degree in political science would limit her career options. “I realized that up until then, I had been following the career path that I thought I needed, rather than the one I wanted.” 

Hispanic households are known to inculcate the importance of education especially as an immigrant family. Jennifer’s mother “would sometimes sit with me as I did my homework,” to show support for her collegiate efforts. According to Hispanic Star statistics, 83% of Latinos see education as an important issue for their community and family. 

“Growing up, our parents taught us that a higher education degree was often correlated with more opportunities,” Jennifer reiterates. “While there are careers that do not require a higher education degree, it helps provide those opportunities that you might otherwise miss.”

Haz La U motivated Jennifer to go to college and ease the financial burden. Even if she would have not been awarded the grant in 2016, she would continue to look for opportunities. 

“While other scholarship and grant opportunities were often limited to a select group of people, Haz LA U felt like an open door for people like me,” assured Jennifer. 

Muñoz stresses the importance of looking for scholarships and grants “even when you think you might not be awarded.” The process can be intimidating but do not be discouraged and continue to apply for those grants. 

“Having support is incredibly important, whether it’s family or friends, or anyone who you count on,” Jennifer emphasizes. “There are times where things might feel too difficult or impossible, and it’s helpful to have a different perspective. We are our worst critics, so having that support system will help you take a step back and say, I know I can do this.”

To apply for the Haz la U™ scholarship, visit Colgate.com/MakeTheU.

 

 

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