Carlos Lopez, CAYA participant from El Salvador who came in July 2011, was awarded an academic scholarship by the Walton International Scholarship Program and enrolled at John Brown University (JBU) in Arkansas during August of 2012. He is majoring in International Business, Marketing and Administration and plans on acquiring his undergraduate degree by May of 2016.
In addition to his full time university studies, Carlos actively participates in a number of community service initiatives during the school year in the United States and during school vacations in El Salvador. These volunteer activities include:
- Volunteering as an English tutor in the Gloria Kriete Foundation “Oportunidades” Program in El Salvador.
- Volunteering as an English and subject specific tutor for struggling middle-school Hispanic students in Siloam Springs, Arkansas.
- Volunteering to help students implement social entrepreneurship projects in El Salvador.
Carlos is serving as elected Vice President of Marketing at the JBU chapter of Enactus, a student-run organization that develops entrepreneurial projects to empower students to build sustainable solutions for communities. Carlos has implemented several projects successfully through Enactus, which included implementing a World Trade Exposition where middle-school students were taught how to develop small business plans, providing support for an Adult Development Center to help disabled adults in his community, and launching a water project to provide communities in Guatemala with clean water.
The CAYA Program is a U.S. Department of State youth exchange designed to strengthen the leadership skills of young people from Central America and the United States. This multi-national exchange also builds bonds of friendship and understanding between people of Central America and people of the United States.