<!--:es-->Joe Ayala, latino scholarship recipient constructs solid future for himself and his family<!--:-->

Joe Ayala, latino scholarship recipient constructs solid future for himself and his family

Currently a senior at TAMU, Joe Angel Ayala is taking his passion for construction and his new degree in construction science to create a life of success for his family. Ayala is a past client of the Dallas Housing Authority and a recipient of DHA’s Celebrating Rising Youth in their Success, Talents, Achievements and Leadership (CRYSTAL) Award.

“The entire DHA organization is proud to know one of its former clients is using their God given talents to create a better life for himself and others,” said Ann Lott, president and CEO.

Ayala was a graduate of W.H. Adamson High School in the Dallas Independent School District. Ayala, interested in furthering his education, knew that gaining more knowledge would lead to a successful future. Ayala gives much thanks to DHA for leading him on this path. “The CRYSTAL Award Scholarship I received really showed me that people cared whether I succeeded or not,” said Ayala. Ayala says the scholarship helped him mentally more than many would suspect. Ayala said he believed in himself more because of the scholarship and the way DHA treated him as a person.

Ayala is married and plans to begin his career back in Dallas with his wife, Krystal. He recently received a job offer and will soon become one-step closer to accomplishing his goal of success. Ayala wants to be successful in his career and capable of providing for his family. “Thanks to DHA I learned how to stay focused and set goals for my life,” said Ayala, “and if I could give other Latinos in my position any advice I would tell them to do the same and to never think they are alone in their dreams of success.”

Dallas Housing Authority, Phoenix Foundation CRYSTAL Scholarships

Continuing a decade-old tradition of helping students living in low-income and public housing realize the their dreams of going to college, the Dallas Housing Authority awarded 44 students from around the Metroplex with scholarships totaling $75,000 as part of its annual CRYSTAL Awards Scholarship program. More than 200 people, including Mayor Tom Leppert, DHA CEO and President Ann Lott as well as past recipients, board members, graduating seniors and their families attended the event held at the Women’s Museum.

Students who remained in the program, which helps raise awareness about the importance of community service and prepares students for life after high school, through their senior year and met all of the program requirements were eligible to apply for a scholarship. Requirements include:

·Graduation or completion of their GED

·Enrolling in an institution of higher learning for the Fall semester following their senior year of high school

·Living in public or housing choice voucher housing

·Completing CRYSTAL Award Preparation Class Training (CAPTS)

· Participating in a DHA community service project

· Submitting a 500-word essay on the chosen DHA topic for the year (this year’s topic was the importance of community service)

Since its inception in 1997, the Phoenix Foundation has awarded nearly $450,000 in scholarships to more than 400 teenagers. Students benefiting from the program’s scholarships have gone on to attend colleges, trade and vocational schools including: Berklee College of Music, Drake University, Florida A&M University, Tennessee State University, Texas A&M University, the University of Oklahoma, the University of Texas at Austin and Xavier University—to name a few.

“DHA’s mission is about more than securing housing for local families, it is about giving families a fresh start and a chance to create better opportunities for themselves and their loved ones,” said Ann Lott. “We thrive on assisting students in realizing their dreams while also setting a positive example for other children in public housing.”

CRYSTAL Award Scholarship Candidates (HIGH SCHOOLS)

High Schools Students

South Grand Prairie High School: Eboni Alexander; David W. Carter High School: Kimberly Anderson; Alexia Issac and Neosha Jones; Lincoln High School: Byron Bailey; Terrence Forest and Teandria Gilmore; Justin F. Kimball High School: Sanessa Benard, Terra Brown, Kiara Rhodes and Shaterra Rhodes ; Mesquite High School: Tierra Burns:

Booker T. Washington High School: Anthony Castello, Darranique Hobbs; Poteet High School: Aneisha Clinton; Duncanville High School: Fredrick Coleman, Otera Watson, Desmond Horn; MacArthur High Scool: Yamache Doxen;

Waxahachie High School: James Fowler; West Mesquite High School: Courtney Galvan; Dallas Can Academy: Vanessa Garay; Bishop Dunne High School: Darrell Glasco; New Beginning Christian Academy: Valencia Govea; L.G. Pinkston High School: Kimshunda Griffin, Santos Lopez, Mikel Lott; Plano West Senior High School: Anicqua Hasty; Townview Magnet Center: Erika Hines; North Da-llas High School: Toto Ho, Courtres Walker, Brittany Stubblefield, Darrin January; Newman Smith High School: Terry Lawrence; Ranchview High School: LaCrecia Porter; Lakeview Centennial High School: Karinsia Rivers; Cedar Hill High School: Brittany Sansom, Krystal Wilburn; Skyline High School: Christopher Tate, Gerikah Williams, Terance Wilson;

Duncanville/PACE High School: Jaquel Thomas; Faith Family Academy: Jacqueline Weatherall; Franklin D. Roosevelt High School: Miriana Williams