Kmart announced the names of 2011 Latina Smart Fund scholarship recipients. The Latina Smart Fund was created in 2011 as a means to make higher education more accessible to Hispanic youth. Winners announced today were chosen amongst nearly 200 students across the nation who submitted applications through the Latina Smart Facebook page.

Applicants uploaded written essays and video submissions to the Latina Smart Facebook page describing what it means to be “Latina Smart.” The top-50 entries with the greatest number of “likes” advanced to a second round of reviews. Latina Smart brand ambassadors then selected 20 entries to advance to the final round where a committee of experts in the areas of business and education selected one $10,000 first-prize winner and three $5,000 runners up.

Odalis Lopez, a freshman and communications major at the University of Maryland at College Park, was awarded the $10,000 first-prize scholarship. “I am the first high school graduate in my family and my tenacity led me to become the first Hispanic valedictorian in my high school – never let anything hinder your success,” said Lopez.

For more details, visit http://www.facebook.com/latinasmart.

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