Five NTCC students named semi-finalists for Jack Kent Cooke Transfer Scholarship


Northeast Texas Community College students Courtney Baldwin, Jazmin Garcia, Daniel Landaverde, Verania Leyva-Garcia, and Andrea Reyes were all named semi-finalists in the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Transfer Scholarship competition. The Jack Kent Cooke scholarship is worth $40,000 a year for up to three years, for a total scholarship value of $120,000.

Baldwin, a history major from Oakland, California, is NTCC’s first National Collegiate Honors Council poster award winner. She also won the Boe Award from the Great Plains Honors Council for her paper on the role of music in African-American history. Baldwin is a Coca-Cola Leader of Promise, Texas STAR Scholar, Eckman Award winner, elected Student Representative for the Great Plains Honors Council, and serves as an Executive Officer for the Alpha Mu Chi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa.

Garcia, a biomedical science major from Mount Pleasant, is a Dr. Mary Hood scholar, Walter B. Cooper scholar, Texas STAR Scholar, and Caldwell Award winner. Her essay on Texas First Lady Mildred Moody was published in the Touchstone journal and presented at the National College Honors Council meeting in Boston. She has also served as an Executive Officer for the Alpha Mu Chi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa and as an officer for the Bio-Chem club.

Landaverde, a business major from Mount Pleasant, is a Presidential Honors Scholar, Chitsey Award recipient, Caldwell Award winner, and a Coca-Cola Leader of Promise. He presented his award winning work on Mount Pleasant Hispanics at the National Collegiate Honors Council. An active member of the Alpha Mu Chi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, Landaverde is also a semi-finalist for the PTK Fall Common Scholarships.

Leyva-Garcia, a biology major from Mount Pleasant, is a Presidential Honors Scholar, Caldwell Award winner, Eckman Award winner, Dr. Jerry Wesson scholarship for excellence in Honors, and Phi Theta Kappa Texas STAR Scholar. She is one of very few students who have presented work at both the National Collegiate Honors Council as well as the Great Plains Honors Council in multiple years.

Reyes, a medical lab tech major from Hughes Springs, currently serves as the Honors Assistant at NTCC. She was a Presidential Honors Scholar the first year of the program at NTCC. While helping other students with their Jack Kent Cooke scholarship applications she realized that anyone who had not yet gone on to attend a major university and had graduated less than five years ago from a community college was eligible to apply. Seeking to better understand the process and realizing that she was, herself, eligible to apply she completed the application and is now a semi-finalist. 

“I hope to serve as encouragement for those facing challenges continuing their education or reaching for a career goal to look and apply for available resources and scholarships,” Reyes said.

Based on Reyes’ experiences, if anyone is considering going on to a four year university but has not done so due to economic concerns, they may be eligible to apply. If they are not currently an enrolled student at NTCC, as long as they attended here within the last five years, they can apply for a Jack Kent Cooke Transfer Scholarship.

Winners will be announced this spring. NTCC has had nine Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship winners since 2010. Named in reverse chronological order, they are: Alicia Cantrell (2018), Brenda Godoy (2018), Angelica Fuentes (2016), Jessica Velazquez (2016), Kayleah Cumpian (2015), Stephen Milburn (2014), Matthew Jordan (2014), Stephanie Calderon (2013) and Clara Ramirez (2010).