(Santa Ana, CA) - The Santa Ana College (SAC) Veterans Resource Center (VRC) is honoring former SAC student veteran Jonathan Hernandez with its Transfer Award at the 2019 Philanthropic Dinner and Student Recognition event on Thursday, May 9.
Hernandez, 30, is a first generation Mexican-American and the youngest and first of his siblings to graduate from college. He received an associate degree from SAC in history and liberal arts in fall 2018. Prior to attending SAC, which he chose because he had heard family members rave about their experience, he served in the United States Army for four years with one tour overseas. Although he is currently a student at California State University, Long Beach majoring in History/Social Science for Teaching, Hernandez said SAC’s VRC was instrumental in his success as a student.
“The VRC has meant everything to me,” he said. “It is one of the main reasons as to why I am still in school today. The VRC has offered me so much, from utilizing community partnerships to having workshops. In addition, I have had academic opportunities and mental health support that was provided through relationships within the community.”
Hernandez said he took advantage of the VRC’s one-on-one tutoring that was available in Math and English and found a place where he belonged at the center.
“It feels like a home away from home where I can relate with other student veterans,” said Hernandez. “Since the spring of 2017, and since the moment I walked into the VRC, I have been taken care of.”
Hernandez will receive this year’s Transfer Award, presented to a student who displays leadership through academics, activities and assisting veterans in their journey toward a degree. “Winning the award,” said Hernandez, “reminds me of how far I have come since high school, both academically and socially. It feels amazing to be rewarded for being part of something I care so much about.”
In addition to Hernandez, the Philanthropic Dinner and Student Recognition event honors student veteran Jose Marin, former student veteran Jonathan Medina, Madeline and Ronnie Grant, AT&T, R.A. Industries, U.S. Bank, Farmers & Merchants Bank, Lentz Morrissey Architecture, Strength in Support, and Goodwill of Orange County’s Tierney Center for Veteran Services.
The Philanthropic Dinner and Student Recognition is from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Santa Ana College campus, 1530 W. 17th St. in Santa Ana, and is sponsored by Farmers & Merchants Bank, Lentz Morrissey Architecture, Lockwood Retirement Consulting, Rancho Santiago Community College District (RSCCD) Vice Chancellor of Education Services Enrique Perez and other valued supporters. Tickets, $100 per person ($50 for RSCCD) staff, are available at
www.sac.edu/soldiers2scholars. For additional information, call (714) 564-6091.
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About Santa Ana College
Santa Ana College (SAC), which turned 100 years old in 2015, serves about 18,000 students each semester at its main campus in Santa Ana. The college prepares students for transfer to four-year institutions, and provides invaluable workforce training and customized training for business and industry. In addition, another 11,000 students are served through the college’s School of Continuing Education located at Centennial Education Center. Ranked as one of the nation’s top two-year colleges awarding associate degrees to Latino and Asian students, the college is also recognized throughout the state for its comprehensive workforce training programs for nurses, firefighters, law enforcement and other medical personnel. SAC is one of two comprehensive colleges under the auspices of the
Rancho Santiago Community College District.