Estrella Barcenas and Owen Hom, Marshall Fundamental Secondary School students receive Full Tuition Posse Scholarships
Pasadena, California -- Marshall Fundamental Secondary School is pleased to announce Estrella Barcenas and Owen Hom, Class of 2023 Seniors have both received Full Tuition Posse Scholarships.
On Thursday, January 5th, the Los Angeles Posse Foundation held an in-person Induction Ceremony at the Regal Theater in Los Angeles where the Posse Leadership Scholarship was awarded to nearly ninety students in the Los Angeles area. The selected candidates were from a pool of 2200 Los Angeles Posse Scholar Nominees. Each of the recipient scholars will attend one of Posse LA's nine partner colleges and universities across the nation.
Principal Lori Touloumian stated, "We are so incredibly proud of both Estrella and Owen for being awarded the prestigious Posse Scholarship. This tremendous recognition is a testament to their hard work, determination, and motivation throughout their educational journey at Marshall. Both Estrella and Owen have attended Marshall since the 6th grade, and our entire school community celebrates their wonderful achievement. We wish them both continued success at Kalamazoo College and the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Eagles SOAR! "
Estrella Barcenas, Kalamazoo College, Posse 15
Estrella Barcenas will attend Kalamazoo College in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where she plans to major in Psychology. Her Posse Award will cover tuition for four full years estimated at $225,000.
When entering the Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD) Estrella was identified as an English Learner (EL) with Spanish being her first language. She excelled early and was reclassified to “Fluent English Proficient” at Jackson Elementary School. Following her promotion from Jackson Estrella joined the Marshall Fundamental Eagle Family in 6th grade.
As a Marshall Eagle Estrella is enrolled in the Academy for Creative Industries College and Career Pathway Program in the Drama Track. She has participated in several drama performances as part of the Stage Tech. She has exhibited her leadership skills as a member of the Associated Student Body (ASB) currently serving on the ASB Cabinet Member as the Class of 2023 Senior Class President. Her club involvement includes being the Co-Founder and Co-President of the Mental Health Club with an emphasis on Self-Care. She is also a member of the Rock the Street, Wall Street Financial Literacy Club, and the Latino Club.
Estrella is a member of the Cal State Los Angeles Trio Upward Bound Program and has capitalized on her college pursuits as a participant in the College Access Plan (CAP). She has gained work experience and industry knowledge with her internships. She was the Lead Intern at the USC Pacific Asian Museum, an Intern at Day One where she worked on Project Sticker Shock, and completed an Internship at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures as a Teen Council Member. She continues her commitment to community service through her role as a Youth Ambassador for the City of Pasadena. In addition, she worked on a Social Justice Project in the Girls Voices Now Program as a Documentarian Film Maker and won a Daytime Emmy Award 2021 for "Outstanding Short Form Children's Program". She has extended her community work as a Pasadena Tournament of Roses Student Ambassador Volunteer and as an International Film and Media Youth Judge for Women's Voices Now.
Owen Hom, University of Wisconsin- Madison Posse 21
Owen will attend the University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW) where he plans to major in Digital Science. His Posse award will cover tuition for four full years estimated at $160,000.
Owen began his educational career with the Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD) in Kindergarten at Don Benito Elementary. He joined the Marshall Fundamental Eagle family in sixth grade. As a Marshall Eagle, he has maintained a 4.0 and higher for each semester, earning his place on the Principal’s Honor Roll for all semesters. His current GPA is 4.5.
His extracurricular activities include his leadership role as a member of the Associated Student Body (ASB), serving his 11th-grade year as a Member-at-Large, and his 12th-grade year as the ASB Treasurer. He is a member of the National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society, Asian Club, Filipino Club, Students for Environmental Awareness (SEA) Club, Computer Science Club, and Key Club. In addition, he competed as an alternate for Marshall Fundamental's High School Science Bowl Team at JPL last year and will serve as team captain for the 2022-2023 year. He extended his aptitude for data science this past summer as an intern at the Caltech Planet Finder Academy, analyzing data and coding programs to identify space objects. His work there includes “Fitting RV Data for Vega.”
As a volunteer, Owen helped to pass out meals through the Pasadena Educational Foundation during COVID-19. He is also a volunteer with the Pasadena American Little League, and an 11-year Spanish classical guitar performer and teacher.
Owen is recognized by the College Board as AP Scholar with Honors and is a candidate for the distinguished AP Capstone Diploma for his research involving data collection and analysis using Fourier Transform spectrometers at Caltech and JPL: “How Might Climate Change Predictions on Greenhouse Gases Worldwide Need to be Reevaluated and Refocused?”
As a student-athlete, Owen was a four-year member of the Marshall Eagle Baseball Team. He played on the JV Team his first year, advancing to the Varsity Team his sophomore year as a middle infielder/utility. The team achieved records of 16-2 (2021) and 18-5 (2022), winning Mission Valley League titles in both years.
The Posse Foundation
The Posse Foundation identifies, recruits, and trains student leaders from Los Angeles area high schools to form multicultural teams of 10 scholars called “Posses”. Posse is a four-year program designed to ensure ‘Scholars’ success providing them with support for competitive internships and other distinguished awards.
Both Estrella and Owen received their Posse nomination based on their merits as Marshall Fundamental students in academic excellence and extracurriculars, as active community volunteers, and through their overall perseverance as leaders. The nomination led them through the Posse Process consisting of three interviews including the “Posse Dynamic Assessment Process (DAP), a unique evaluation method that identifies young leaders with great potential.” This process included group and individual interviews with Posse Staff, College Partners, and Administrators.
Each Posse Group will begin participating in regular Pre-Collegiate Training (PCT) with their Posse peers and the Posse staff. PCT is a series of two-hour workshops over a series of weeks where scholars work on academic excellence, team building and group support cross-cultural communication, leadership, and enhance their skills in becoming active agents of change.
Estrella and Owen are the two latest of the 42 Marshall Fundamental students awarded a Posse Scholarship over the past seventeen years.