Thank you to all our LUCES Donors for
supporting our Scholarships Fund and our Rising Stars Mentoring Program!
LUCES is a nonprofit organization that works to ensure bright futures for young Latinos in Wisconsin by providing mentoring and several merit and need-based scholarships.
On September 2005, a small group called Club Mexiquense was created to work with small issues involving our Latino community in South Central Wisconsin. It quickly became apparent that we needed an organization to empower and support our Latino students and their families in order for our student to be able to pursue their dreams of higher education. A group of community volunteers joined efforts to help and work on community events in order to provide Academic Scholarships for low-income Latino students. This group became known as Latinos United for College Education Scholarships (LUCES)
Madison Times and other local newspapers have published articles discussing the closing of the academic achievement gap for minorities, especially, Latinos and African Americans. Despite the combined efforts of policy makers, educators from the MMSD and minority community leaders to solve this issue, our students have continued to underperform and many of them do not have the opportunity or means to continue their higher education and realizing that college dream.
This is one of the many reasons that our volunteers and our Board of Directors are joining efforts to collaborate and partner with the local area school districts, Madison College, UW-Madison and Edgewood College. This collaboration will help provide educational opportunities to our Latino students.
LUCES continues to work hard to provide scholarships to help pay a partial tuition and help our students achieve their dreams to have a better and brighter future, for them, their families and our Wisconsin community. This is a win-win for everyone. Let us work together to make a difference and support LUCES’ efforts by donating and volunteering.
Pedro R Albiter
President & Founder
Pedro Albiter is the founder and current President of LUCES (Latinos United for College Education Scholarships) since April, 2005. Pedro started working for the State of Wisconsin, Department of Workforce Development since 2001 as an Employment & Training Specialist-Bilingual. During this time, he has worked with employers and job seekers and has coordinated the MSFW Outreach Program for South Central Wisconsin. He was promoted to Migrant Labor Inspector for the Southern part of Wisconsin in 2015.
Pedro holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Secondary Education-Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He also holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Elementary Education from the State of Mexico.
From time spent in Chile, Chicago, and her native Madison, Sarah discovered her true passion: working with underserved youth and promoting their advancement in both academia and the workforce. She has a diverse range of work experience, from leading health education workshops in under-resourced Chicago public high schools to implementing the first English Club at a small Chilean high school. She sees education as a force of strength, power, and liberation, for all people but for young people in particular. She has really enjoyed her time as Treasurer and Gala Silent Auction Coordinator for LUCES. As she says, “I have seen firsthand that when students realize that education is the most powerful tool that they can possess, they believe in the process, and they believe in themselves. I really enjoy being a part of that process.”
Sayra Jayo - Fund Development/ Annual Gala Coordinator.
Sayra has been on the Board of Directors since 2014 coordinating the Annual Scholarship Gala and assist with the Rising Stars mentoring program workshops. She has been working closely with business and sponsors in order to increase funding for the "Rising Stars" Mentoring Program and Scholarship.
Melissa was born in Lima, Perú and lived there until my family immigrated to Madison when I was 13 years old. Her experiences, both positive and negative, navigating the school system in the U.S. inspired her to become a teacher. Because of these experiences, she made it her personal and professional goal to support students and families navigate the school system all the way through to high school graduation and onto higher education. In order to do so, she earned my Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and Spanish at UW-Madison and then went on to Edgewood College to complete a Masters in Education along with a Dual Language Immersion certificate, Bilingual license and ESL license. For six years, she worked at Midvale Elementary as a kindergarten Dual Language Immersion teacher and now works for the Madison School District in the Office of Multilingual and Global Education as a Dual Language Immersion Planner.
Kevin Foley has been dedicated to improving the lives of Latino Students in Wisconsin for over 10 years. Kevin has a wide range of professional experiences, including Madison College, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and teaching at the Latino Academy of Workforce Development. Currently, Kevin works at Madison Area Technical College with the English as a Second Language Program as well as working with adult students completing their High School Equivalency. Kevin completed his bachelor's degree in 2006 from the University of Iowa where he studied Spanish. In 2014, Kevin completed his Master's Degree from UW-Milwaukee in Cultural Foundations of Education.
Mallory has always been very passionate about education. She currently financially educates her customers at BMO Harris Bank, but for years she taught many diverse individuals all over the world about Spanish and English languages and cultures. Throughout her life she has conducted academic and individual studies in many cultures including Guatemala, Panama, Chile, Belize, parts of the Caribbean, and throughout Europe, and also spent over 3 years studying, working, and living abroad in Spain. She graduated with a double Bachelors of the Arts from Beloit College in Spanish and Anthropology, and is currently receiving her Masters of Business Administration from the UW Madison School of Business. Her experiences in higher education have afforded her a great deal of success in her professional and personal lives, and allowed her an immense feeling of personal fulfillment. It is this same passion that brings her to sit on the Board for LUCES and inspire others to expand their horizons in amazing ways as well.