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NMSU graduate student is a finalist in the Escuela Diplomatica scholarship

New Mexico State University graduate student, and Las Cruces resident, Rodrigo Mora is a finalist in the Escuela Diplomatica where, if chosen, he will travel to Spain and be part of the master's program for diplomacy and international relations and receive a full scholarship.

Rodrigo Mora is one of five finalists in the nation-wide Esquela Diplomatica scholarship where, if chosen, will be studying graduate school in Madrid. (NMSU photo by Darren Phillips)

Mora was presented with the opportunity by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute in Washington, D.C. It allows for Hispanic students nationwide to apply and have the chance to be chosen by the Spanish Embassy to study in Spain and receive their master's degree. If chosen, Mora will leave in October and return next May.

"I am very excited that someone from NMSU was selected," Mora said. "We have a great school and we should be proud of it."

He encouraged all students to take chances when they are presented and not be intimidated by the large amount of applicants, because they have just as much opportunity as the others.

As part of the requirements to be eligible, Mora had to be fluent in Spanish and submit an essay written in Spanish. The five finalists were picked by the CHCI and now the Spanish Embassy will pick the final winner. He would also be eligible to receive an additional stipend to help with living and other expenses.

After graduating, he hopes to take part in nonprofit programs to help the people in the Las Cruces community, then hopefully expand further.

"We do have a 20 percent poverty rate and I don't think a lot of people realize that because we are so secluded here in the university," Mora said. "We need to try and do something to help these people out because they are families."

Mora would also like to thank Lisa Bond-Maupin and Jim Maupin of the sociology department for all their support.