Our Scholars

We are committed to success. Learn about opportunities that LiFT scholars have engaged in to support their personal and professional growth.

Scholars' Accomplishments

Andres Calvillo at Infosys

Andres Calvillo

Infosys InStep Global Internship Experience, Summer 2019

InStep includes an allowance, flight tickets to and from, airport transfers in India, visa fees, accommodation, chauffeur-driven cars, health insurance, health club membership, and many other conveniences.

Isabel Lopez at the i3 Institute

Isabel Lopez

iSchool Inclusion Institute (i3), Summer 2019

i3 is an undergraduate research and leadership development program that prepares students from underrepresented populations for graduate study and careers in the information sciences. Only 25 students from across the country are selected each year to become i3 Scholars. Those students undertake a yearlong experience that includes two summer institutes hosted by the University of Pittsburgh School of Computing and Information and a research project spanning the year.

Andrew Burkholder at Geico

Andrew Burkholder

Xtern Participant: Business Analyst Intern for Geico, Summer/Fall 2019

Through Xtern selected college students have the opportunity to work alongside industry leaders at Indy’s fastest-growing tech companies, live and make friends with more than 100 other Xterns from around the country, and experience why Indy is such an awesome place to live and work in the tech field. TechPoint provides the ultimate tech internship experiences through the Xtern program.

Group of Salesforce interns

Megan Dabney, Andrew George, and Andrea Johnson

Salesforce Pathfinder Program, Spring/Summer 2019

Armed with both the technical and business skills to become Salesforce administrators and developers, Salesforce Pathfinder graduates will fulfill in-demand positions in the Salesforce ecosystem and blaze their own career trails.

Alvaro Gomez, Stewart McCalley, and Jared Westerfield

Undergraduate Research, Spring/Summer 2019

Engaging undergraduate research experiences provides students an opportunity to engage in research under the mentorship of a faculty member. There are a variety of ways students can engage in undergraduate research, students are encouraged to explore the variety of student programs offered through the Center for Research and Learning at IUPUI.

Meet the Scholars

LiFT Juniors (began Fall 2017)

Alvaro Gomez
Alvaro Gomez

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: To follow my passion and have support while doing so.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program showed support no matter what and are here to help me if I need it.

Andres Calvillo
Andres_Calvillo

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: It was the best opportunity for me to secure a college career
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me with the support from the involved staff and cohort.

Andrew Burkholder
Andrew Burkholder

  • Hometown: Elkhart, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I was very intrigued by the many mentoring opportunities, industry connections, and financial assistance offered in the program.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: I have been able to learn a lot more about the industry I expect to join after college through industry visits and speakers. The LiFT Scholars Program has also enabled me to focus more on my academics and avoid student loans through financial aid.

Dallas Rian Buckler
Dalla Rian Buckler

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I have always had an interest in technology from a young age and a knack with computers. Going into college I wanted to be a part of a community and LiFT has provided me with that and more.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has provided me with funds to attend college without having to struggle with my finances. It has also provided a community of people that I trust and can rely on if I need help. Overall, it has allowed me to excel in my first year of college and I’m sure it will continue to be a massive benefit for me in the years to come.

Emily Patrick
Emily Patrick

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: To grow and learn, not only as a person, but as a student.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has been a consistent support group in my journey and has helped me be the best student and leader in my community.

Froylan Avila-Baez
Froylan Avila-Baez

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I wanted to explore the roots of technology and learn how everything is put together and create something for the world to use in their daily lives.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The people, the events, the speakers and the program has been changing who I am as a person.

Grant Taylor
Grant Taylor

  • Hometown: Franklin, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I became a LiFT scholar because of the numerous opportunities of success it presented to me. Instead of just dropping me into college blindly, LiFT provided me with a sort of “security net” that eased me into it.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program provided a very real sense of community during my first year at college. Interacting with like-minded people on a regular basis not only made it significantly easier to make connections but helped to push me into realizing what I wanted to focus on academically.

Jack Riggs
Jack Riggs

  • Hometown: Fairfield, Ohio
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: Opportunities provided me to learn more about informatics and its growth.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: I made new friends and saw various careers in informatics through the LiFT Scholars Program.

Jared Westerfield
Jared Westerfield

  • Hometown: Fishers, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I learned about the scholarship during my senior year of high school. The more I learned about the community, the program, and the potential for industry exposure, the more I knew that the LiFT Scholars Program would be an amazing opportunity for me.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program helped me become a part of a community of fellow students. I feel like I came to campus, and instantly was able to make many friends in the same major as me. Stress was drastically reduced, because I had friends who were taking similar, if not the same, classes. As a result, we spent a lot of time together, studied together, and succeeded together. The scholarship portion of the program was a huge help. It allowed me to live on-campus, not have to take out any additional loans and not have to find a job on campus my freshman year. This allowed me to focus on my classes and get to know others in the LiFT community and my major.

Jonathan Larsen
Jonathan Larsen

  • Hometown: Richmond, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: To be connected to others in my degree and learn more about Informatics and what it has to offer in my future.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: I have been able to be more sociable with others through the LiFT Scholars Program.

Julius Joiner
Julius Joyner

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I needed help to get through college and this program seemed like a perfect place to apply.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: I have been exposed to more opportunities in this past semester through the LiFT Scholars Program than I probably would have normally if I was not a LiFT Scholar.

Liam Murphy
Liam Murphy

  • Hometown: Vincennes, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I was interested in computer science until I found out about the opportunity for LiFT which led me to switch over to Informatics. I also liked the idea of being a part of a community rather than it just being like any other scholarship.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has allowed me to complete my first year of college debt free and given me great opportunities such as industry visits and meeting new people.

Luke Hedrick
Luke Hedrick

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: To be a part of a community that all shares the same interests, and that allows me to use my talents to help others and receive help when needed.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has helped me adapt and enjoy college by surrounding me with a great group of friends who I see in all my classes. I have developed many relationships with not only peers but also teachers and faculty that will help me through my life.

Mason Wassmer
Mason Wassmer

  • Hometown: Poseyville, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I figured it would help me find a career that I enjoyed while being surrounded by the people I am with now and to get a better understanding of what I can do in the future.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program helped me meet new people, interact with them and made starting my freshman year much better, along with going to IT companies.

Matthew Kruze
Matthew Kruze

  • Hometown: Plainfield, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: Interest in the field, and fortunate circumstance.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: It has allowed me to go to college, and has given me access to fantastic opportunities, resources, and program-mates who will remain my friends for years to come.

Stewart McCalley
Stewart McCalley

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: To help me pay for college and to get support for school.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has given me a community to work with.

LiFT Sophomores (began Fall 2018)

Abril Zaragoza-Palos
Abril Zaragoza

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Pike High School

Carlos Banuelos
Carlos Banuelos

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Arsenal Tech High School

Chris Valdez
Chris Valdez

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Providence Cristo Rey High School

Daya Collins
Daya Collins

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Providence Cristo Rey High School

Isabel Lopez
Isabel Lopez

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Providence Cristo Rey High School

James Myers
James Myers

  • Hometown: Muncie, Indiana
  • High School: Indiana Academy for Science, Math, and Huma

Jasmin Hernandez
Jasmin Hernandez

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Providence Cristo Rey High School

Joshua Rice
Joshua Rice

  • Hometown: Greenwood, Indiana
  • High School: Center Grove High School

Julie Tadrous
Julie Tadrous

  • Hometown: Fishers, Indiana
  • High School: Hamilton Southeastern High School

Justin Rice
Justin Rice

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Breubuf Jesuit Preparatory School

Maimouna Diallo
Maimouna_Diallo

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Pike High School

Maverick Custin
Maverick Custin

  • Hometown: Peru, Indiana
  • High School: Maconaquah High School

Miguel Olivares
Miguel Olivares

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Providence Cristo Rey High School

Rebekah Holcomb
Rebecca Holcomb

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Pike High School

Ricardo Sookdeo (Benson Obama)
Ricardo Sookdeo

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Arsenal Tech High School

Ryan Deal
Ryan Deal

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Ben Davis High School

Taniah Hamilton
Taniah Hamilton

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: Providence Cristo Rey High School

Taylor Young
Taylor Young

  • Hometown: Beech Grove, Indiana
  • High School: Beech Grove High School

Tucker Bushhorn
Tucker Bushhorn

  • Hometown: Westport, Indiana
  • High School: South Decatur High School

Ivy Tech Transfer Students

We are proud of our Ivy Tech LiFT scholars who have transferred to SOIC to pursue their bachelor’s degree in informatics:

Sean Kalis

Sean Kalis

  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I became a LiFT scholar because it seemed to be a great resource in getting my degree while being around those who also have a passion for the field of computer technologies like I do.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program has allowed me to take extra courses that I did not have the financial opportunity to take before, as well as network and connect with employers and peers. LiFT has also sparked a new passion for working with software, something I didn’t really give much thought to before.

Matthew Mills
Matthew Mills

  • Hometown: Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: I have enjoyed working with computers from a young age and informatics seems like an interesting way to use computers to better understand and solve problems.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: Since becoming a LiFT member I have received nothing but support and encouragement from Molly Morin and her team. It helps me to stay motivated and go the extra mile so that i might set a good example for my classmates as well as the other LiFT scholars.

Sukhdeep Singh

  • Hometown: Greenwood, Indiana
  • Why I became a LiFT Scholar: To network with other informatics scholars.
  • How the LiFT Scholars Program has impacted me: The LiFT Scholars Program gave me an inside look at work in IT through field trip visits.