Academic Standouts Haley Lepe and Kenneth Pilco to Attend Stanford University This Fall

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MiraCosta College is proud to announce that two outstanding students, Kenneth Pilco and Haley Lepe, have been accepted to Stanford University and will start their studies there this fall. As a proud Hispanic Serving Institution, with over 42 percent of its student body being Latinx, Kenneth and Haley embody the transformative power of community college education.

Kenneth Pilco: A Journey of Perseverance and Achievement

Kenneth Pilco earned his associate degree in Law, Public Policy, and Society from MiraCosta College in May and is set to major in International Relations at Stanford, emphasizing World Trade and International Security. While at MiraCosta, Kenneth was an active member of several organizations, including the Hispanic Serving Institution and student government. His acceptance to Stanford is a testament to his hard work and dedication.

"I find it really unbelievable. I think Stanford accepts like 50 or 40 transfer students a year, and it's so much harder to get in as a transfer student," Pilco said. "I have the opportunity, and it's a great opportunity to inspire other people and to show other people that it is possible."

In addition to Stanford, Kenneth received acceptance offers from several prestigious universities, including the University of California, Berkeley, the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of Southern California. Kenneth credits the Puente Program at MiraCosta, which provides counseling and mentoring to help students transfer to four-year universities, for much of his success.

Haley Lepe: Overcoming Challenges and Embracing Opportunities

Haley Lepe's academic journey has been one of resilience and growth. After initially enrolling in a university right after high school, Haley decided to transfer to MiraCosta College, seeking a better fit for her educational and personal goals. The supportive environment at MiraCosta and the opportunities provided by the MiraCosta Promise grant allowed her to flourish.

At MiraCosta, Haley took on leadership roles, including serving as President of the Computer Science for the Common Good Club and working as a Transfer Center Intern. She also participated in the UC Berkeley Transfer-to-Excellence Summer Research Program. She received an Undergraduate Poster Presentation Award from the National Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics & Native Americans in Science National Diversity in STEM Conference.

Reflecting on her decision to attend MiraCosta, Haley said, "Right from the start, MiraCosta College was the place I hoped for. The counselors were so supportive, and all my professors were motivated to see me succeed. I wouldn't have had these opportunities if it wasn't for MiraCosta College."

This fall, Haley will join Stanford on a full-tuition scholarship, pursuing her passion for Computer Science with a focus on Artificial Intelligence Safety. She aspires to return to community college as a professor to empower future generations, just as she was empowered at MiraCosta.

As these two remarkable students prepare to embark on the next chapter of their academic careers, they carry with them the support and pride of the MiraCosta College community.

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