December 2020

Whether you are a recent alum or graduated many years ago, we want to invite you to join us in rebuilding the Bolívar Network!

In this unprecedented time when the COVID-19 pandemic and calls for racial and social justice are calling us to navigate challenging dynamics, we know how important it is to stand in community with one another. We hope you will accept this invitation to be a part of this renewed journey to shape how the UVA Latinx community is connected, represented and included on grounds and beyond.

As we continue to restructure the Network, we welcome your input on a few questions that will help us calibrate our content in the coming year. Please submit your responses here.

Updates:

Since last fall, when three students were awarded the 2019-2020 Book Scholarships during Homecomings weekend, UVA Hispanic/Latinx alumni have been working together to rebuild the Bolívar Network. As we close out this challenging year, we wanted to share some updates on some of the progress we have made.

The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly affected everyone’s lives and has inevitably affected the student experience on Grounds as well as alumni programming in the works for this year. Yet, many efforts have continued at a safe distance, including the establishment of an updated leadership structure that should allow the Network to flourish in the years to come.

We are excited to announce the new board committee chairs!

Board Co-Chair: Claudia Quintero
Secretary: Alex Cintron
Admissions Vice-Chair: Jason Puryear
Alumni Community Engagement Vice-Chairs: Claudia Bonilla and Karla Aguayo
Fundraising & Development Vice-Chairs: Gina Flores and Brian Zuluaga
Scholarships & Awards Vice-Chair: Hannah “Mel” Borja
Social Media & Communications Vice-Chair: Mariana Brazão
Student Groups Vice-Chair: Angie Aramayo

If you would like to join your fellow alumni in working on a particular committee, please send an email to TheBolivarNetwork@gmail.com with the committee(s) you are interested in contributing to, a sentence about why you are interested in participating in that committee, and any time availability considerations.

2020-2021 Book Scholarship Winners:

This year, we adapted to socially-distanced programming without compromising the importance of centering Latinx students and our 2020-2021 Book Scholarship cycle was a success! We awarded individual $1,000 awards to three outstanding Latinx students to defray the cost of textbooks and other expenses for the 2021 spring semester. We are grateful to the Donors, Review Committee, Board, and staff at Student Financial Services for another successful collaboration to support student success.

The 2020-2021 Book Scholarship winners are below. Read more about our winners on our Instagram!

Bolívar Awards:

Pablo Davis Award Re-Launch:

The Bolívar Network is re-launching its annual Pablo Davis Award! The Pablo Davis Award seeks to identify a University of Virginia staff member, Alum, faculty member, or Charlottesville resident whose work has contributed significantly to the advancement of the Latinx/Hispanic community.

The 2020 Recipient of the Pablo Davis Award is Wayne Cozart! The Bolívar Network is very grateful to Wayne’s early and ongoing support of our organization. In light of today’s growing diversity at the University, having a strong Latinx alumni network to support students and fellow alumni is so powerful and essential. His friendship and leadership gave our group legitimacy, critical contacts of early alumni, and necessary infrastructure. As Wayne ascends into retirement, we would like to honor his contributions to UVA, Jefferson Trust, Alumni Hall, and the Bolívar Network.

Announcing the Bolívar Network Impact Award:

The Bolívar Network is also pleased to announce the creation of its new Impact Award! The Impact Award is distinct in that its recognition is only provided for clearly extraordinary efforts to serve the Latinx community at UVA and/or in the Charlottesville community at large. This award has no specific cycle; rather it is intended for remarkable candidates if and when the Bolívar Network deems they are qualified.

The Bolívar Network is proud to announce that the inaugural Recipient of the Impact Award is Valerie Gregory! Before her recent retirement, Valerie Gregory served as Associate Dean of Admission at UVA for over 20 years. In this role, Dean Gregory has directly contributed to impressive gains in minority student enrollment at UVA.

All the aforementioned awards will be given out at our annual Award Brunch on Saturday, December 5, 2020 at 11am ET. It will be virtual this year, and all are welcome to attend! RSVP here.

Website/Social Updates:

The Bolívar Network is excited to announce a new effort to revamp our online presence, making it easier to connect with us! Follow us on our various social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and check out our website, to stay in tune with all of our activities and programming.

As part of our new social media efforts we are excited to announce the launch of our #AlumniSpotlights campaign! The UVA Latinx alumni community is an accomplished and diverse group. The Bolívar Network wants to spotlight members of this familia to build stronger community and connection as we rebuild this network and we need your help! Who do you think of when you think of a fellow UVA Latinx alumnus who has accomplished great things since graduation? Let us know via this form! Please submit one nomination per entry but feel free to submit more than one nomination! We’ll feature nominated alumni in upcoming newsletters and through our other channels.

Fundraising:

We are currently fundraising for our scholarships and operational funds to support our alumni community. If you would like to donate, please go to this page to make a gift!

Community Engagement:

An important part of our mission is to support our current and new members into the Bolívar Network while also fostering community. Please be on the lookout for a survey as we assess the needs and wants of our community as we plan activities for 2021.

Professional Opportunities:

The Bolívar Network provides a platform for networking and career opportunities. Please feel free to share any professional opportunities with the Bolívar Network (TheBolivarNetwork@gmail.com) to distribute amongst our platforms. These opportunities can range from internships, job openings, and professional development programs to support any stage in one’s career.

If you haven’t already, join The Bolívar Network’s LinkedIn Group and follow our LinkedIn Page to see the most recent professional opportunities!