On Wednesday the Texas A&M San Antonio Foundation honored major supporters of the university with its Dream Maker Award.
The school honored a number of benefactors for their help in funding the education of some local students who otherwise could not have secured tuition assistance.
University President Dr. Maria Hernandez-Ferrier, said one of those students is Savannah Villanueva, who had a great need for tuition assistance, but other scholarships would not consider her application because of her age.
"You know, Savannah is just 16 years old and she is already a junior here at the university," Hernandez-Ferrier said.
The Dream Maker Award was presented to Texas Secretary of State John and Ida "Weisie" Steen and to Peggy and Dan Allen Hughes, Jr.
Hernandez-Ferrier said thanks to the foundation’s help, Villanueva will not only be one of the youngest students ever to attend the university, but also one day could be one of the youngest cancer specialists in the country.
"And because of people like the Steens and the Hughes and other people who have given generously for scholarships, this young lady is well on her way to becoming a physician," Hernandez-Ferrier said.
Texas A&M serves an underserved population on the Southside and is one of the top destinations for young military veterans who have returned home to San Antonio and South Texas. Ferrier said almost 70 percent of the students are Hispanic, and 74 percent are the first in their family to go to college.