Mariana Cruz, BS CEIE ‘11, said she came to George Mason University because it was too good a deal to pass up. The scholarship she received for four years not only paid for her tuition, but it also gave her unprecedented access.
“Within a week of arriving on campus, I was speaking at a scholarship luncheon telling my story to faculty, students, and alumni,” said Cruz. She was encouraged to take advantage of all that Mason had to offer. She traveled to her native country Peru with Engineers for International Development, served as a peer mentor, became active in the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP), and student research.
As an alumna, she continues to stay involved with the school formally by serving on the alumni board and informally by mentoring students.
“I realize not all students have the kind of access and encouragement that I had, so I wanted to do something to support and guide them. Mentoring is a great way to do that,” said Cruz.
Mentoring one student can be a daunting task for some, but Cruz finds it so energizing that she now has three mentees. Each came to her by a different path, but all share their respect and admiration for their mentor.