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Legacy of Former UCR Chancellor

Legacy of Former UCR Chancellor

(April 27, 2000)

Two students from the University of California, Riverside were honored during Friday's Tomas Rivera Conference with $1,500 scholarships from a fund memorializing the late Chancellor, Tomás Rivera. His widow, Conception "Concha" Rivera, helped to make the selections as part of a larger committee. She also presented the awards Friday evening to Angelica Maria Camberos and Juan Carlos Medina.
Camberos is majoring in both English and Creative Writing. She hopes to become an English professor. She credits her fourth grade teacher with encouraging her and helping her become fluent in English. She has worked since the age of 16 to help her family. Medina, a liberal studies major, hopes to become an Ethnic Studies professor. He has tutored limited-English speaking children from low-income families and provided anti-drug and anti-gang counseling for youth at his church.
Carlos E. Cortés, emeritus professor of history at UCR, chaired the scholarship committee. He said Tomas Rivera would have been proud of these two students. "Both of this year's scholarship recipients have demonstrated academic excellence and evidence of ongoing accomplishments, combined with a commitment to pursuing teaching careers," he said.

Tomás Rivera was appointed to lead UCR at the age of 43, the first Latino chancellor of color in the UC system. He served from 1979 to 1984, when he died of a heart attack. He was a leading Chicano writer who paved the way for Chicanos and Latinos in American higher education.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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