Laurentians are known for looking out for and taking care of one another, and Rafael Escoto '24 experienced that firsthand this spring as two of his mentors nominated him for a grant.
Rafael is a recent recipient of a Wiley Stay the Course Grant, which seeks to support students experiencing economic hardship so that they might persist in their college careers.
"Rafael was working hard and doing well in my Stat 113 course, and I appreciated his full engagement in the course," said Patti Frazer Lock, Cummings Professor of Mathematics. "I was also aware that he has had, and was having, some personal difficulties in his life. I felt that he was a perfect candidate for one of these Wiley “Stay-the-Course” grants, designed to help students persevere. We are so happy that he was selected as a winner."
Bill Short, director of St. Lawrence's Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) which Rafael takes part in, also nominated the student for the grant.
"From my perspective, Rafael is an ideal liberal arts student," Short said. "He is a highly accomplished jazz musician having performed at both Carnegie Hall and Jazz at Lincoln Center while in high school, but who wants to explore so much more in the world. He and his family have persevered through a long history of economic struggle. We admitted him into HEOP because his intellect and determination are self-evident and it is abundantly clear that he will make a positive mark in the world."
As frontline witnesses to student challenges, the Wiley Stay the Course Grants program empowers instructors and academic advisors using Wiley products to nominate students in need for these awards. Through a $100,000 contribution, Wiley provided $500 each to 200 students randomly selected from the pool of nominations. Wiley is an American multinational publishing company.