More students headed to college this fall as members of 2014 ‘Posse’

Last year, almost two dozen HISD students became members of the city’s inaugural group of “Posse Scholars,” after a national non-profit called The Posse Foundation expanded its programming to Houston.

That organization will be sending its second group of students off to higher education this fall—and the majority (70 percent)—come from HISD.

The Houston branch of the Posse Foundation announced the 61 members of its Class of 2014 at a special celebration held on Jan. 6, and 43 of those students will be graduating from 18 HISD high schools this spring.

The students are divided into teams of up to 10 people called “posses” that will be attending the same college or university in the fall. The teams are designed to serve as multicultural peer networks whose members can lean on each other for support as they navigate the challenges of higher education.

Jordan High School senior Zykkia Webb (who was profiled in the Feb. 22, 2013 edition of eNews) is a member of the 2014 posse going to Texas A&M University this fall. And while she is understandably thrilled that the costs of her tuition, books, and fees will all be covered by the foundation, what excites Zykkia the most about being a posse member is the feeling of belonging she has experienced.

“What it means to be a part of Posse is that I felt recognized and accepted,” she said. “I have dreamed about being able to walk from my dorm room to class at Texas A&M since I was in the eighth grade, so…this is truly a dream come true.”

“We are thrilled that 43 HISD students—including six EMERGE students—were selected as Posse Scholars,” added HISD Assistant Superintendent of College Readiness Rick Cruz. “Students in the Posse program benefit from having a support system while they are in college. They also develop strong relationships with other Posse scholars and alums that extend beyond graduation.”

The Class of 2014 Posse Scholars from HISD are:

University of Virginia Posse 1:
• Abigail Diaz, Lamar HS
• Oumayma El Hamzaoui, Waltrip HS
• Markfirah Krueng, Challenge ECHS
• Bryce Lindsey, Eastwood Academy
• Daniel Luo, Bellaire HS
• Jacob Marin, Houston Academy for International Studies
• De Lena Martin, Houston Academy for International Studies
• Ted Obi, DeBakey HS

Texas A&M University Posse 2:
• Erika Acosta, Sharpstown International School
• Lianis Almeida, East ECHS
• Demetrius Hollins, Washington HS
• Niyonsaba Magnifique, Lee HS
• Kishan Patel, Austin HS
• David Villarreal, Reagan HS
• Zykkia Webb, Jordan HS

Bryn Mawr Posse 2:
• Sarah Lew, Carnegie Vanguard HS
• Ana Llamas, Westside HS
• Alexis Lopez, Milby HS
• Selena Martinez, Reagan HS
• Rachel Massey, Lamar HS
• Emma Wu, Westside HS

Carleton College Posse 1:
• Mayte Aldrett, East ECHS
• Francisco Castro, Reagan HS
• Taylor Gaines, HSPVA
• David Higgs, Carnegie Vanguard
• Jessica Lartigue, Bellaire HS
• Claussell Stokes, DeBakey HS
• Juan Sebastian Tovar, Lamar HS

Colby College Posse 1:
• James Gonzalez, Carnegie Vanguard
• Marlen Guerrero, DeBakey HS
• Jordan Parker, Challenge ECHS
• Gabriel Pena, Houston Academy for International Studies
• Samuel Robles, Milby HS
• Molly Wu, Westside HS

The University of Texas Posse 2:
• Ahmed Abdelhamid, DeBakey HSHP
• Carlos Diaz, Chávez HS
• Jeremy Dorsey, HSPVA
• Hiwot Gabreyes, Sharpstown International School
• Felipe Garcia, Lamar HS
• Lawrence Garvin II, Westside HS
• Michael Gonzalez, Sam Houston Math Science & Technology Center
• Vy Nguyen, Chávez HS
• Tulshi Patel, Waltrip HS