To close the opportunity gap in access and affordability to higher education opportunities for undocumented and DACAmented students in Orange, Durham and Wake counties in North Carolina.
To be a starting resource for undocumented and DACAmented high school students interested in learning more about and pursuing higher education, as well as providing funding and connections that help them reach their post high school graduation goals.
Professional or social communities are essential in our scholars' journeys throughout all phases of their higher education and life.
It is our duty to work collectively with our scholars to build and expand their economic, educational, and social resources.
Our scholars earn their scholarships because of their evident self-determination and intelligence within both their education and their community.
We stay up to date with the policies and procedures of financial aid and college applications so we can effectively work with our scholars to be their most valuable asset.
We are unapologetically ourselves. Undocumented and DACAmented students have the right to higher education, and we are here to aid them in reaching their highest potential.
It is our job to empower and provide sustainable, continuous support for our scholars no matter what obstacles or challenges we might face.
To be an ally, it is imperative that we remain knowledgeable on the landscape of programs, initiatives, and services for undocumented students.
We are able to offer more extensive initiatives thanks to grants, additional funding, and your support
Scholarships for Higher Education
Providing more undocumented students with scholarships to supplement their first year of higher education, and ultimately, remaining years until graduation.
Educational Enrichment Opportunities
Engaging our scholars with individualized advancement opportunities to support and grow their passions both inside and outside the classroom.
(New!) Youth Mental Health Retreat Series
Thanks to the support of the Durham Public Schools Foundation
And in partnership with local community organizers and adult allies we will be hosting two Youth Mental Health Retreats
Spring 2016 marked the launch of our scholarship application and our inaugural class of scholars. Each year, we work with two new Pupusa scholars to provide scholarships, nurture their passions, and empower them through graduation.
Senior at Guilford College in Greensboro, NC
2018 Scholar Keren moved to the United States from El Salvador in 2014. She says that coming and having to adjust to a new country, language, and school as a teenager has probably been the hardest challenge she has encountered in her life so far. Although there have been many difficulties, she is proud to say that she has grown from a scared young girl who did not know how to ask for her schedule her first day of high school to a strong young woman who now is able to help other students with similar backgrounds. Despite the criticisms and frustrations, and with the support of her family, friends, and teachers, she has managed to stay strong and see the positive aspects of her immigrant experience, in particular the importance of resilience and hard work. In the future, she hopes her story serves as an inspiration not only for immigrants, but anybody who needs motivation. She is also very excited to be part of a program with a beautiful mission, and that also makes one of the things that she, as a good Salvadorian, loves the most... Pupusas!
Senior at Guilford College in Greensboro, NC
2018 Scholar Alina attends Guilford College thanks to the help of the scholarship Pupusas for Education granted her. She plans on double majoring in both Exercise Science and Public Health. Hopefully, in the near future she will also obtain her Masters Degree in Physical Therapy. Alina says, "I am more than an undocumented student from Mexico. I am an indigenous descendent from the Otomi Tribe that once inhabited the grounds of Mexico." She hopes to one day go back to reunite with her family as well as give back to them for all the love, support, and aid they continue to give her.
Junior at Delaware State University in Dover, DE
2019 Scholar Nayeli will become a part of the class of 2023 at Delaware State University. She will be majoring in Forensic Biology with the goal of one day working as a crime laboratory analyst. Nayeli was born in San Luis Potosi, Mexico and raised in North Carolina since she was six. She is proud of her background and deeply thankful for organizations like Pupusas For Education that allow her to pursue an education. She expresses her sincerest gratitude, “It would not have been possible without the contribution and support of this generous organization. Thank you."
Junior at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, NC
2019 Scholar Jatzyri is a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she hopes to major in Neuroscience. Born in Mexico City, Jatzyri has lived in North Carolina since she was 2 years old, and considers it her home. The college application process is an exciting time for many students all over the world. Yet for Jatzyri, it was a time filled with uncertainty and worry. Applying to colleges whilst being a first-generation high school graduate, DACAmented student, and coming from a low-income household was one of the hardest experiences that she has had to endure. However, thanks to generous donors, scholarships such as Pupusas for Education, and years of hard work, Jatyzri is now very excited to pursue her dreams and continue living as an example of Latinx excellence. Go Heels!
Sophmore at Guilford College in Greensboro, NC
2020 Scholar Jesus Peralta Porras immigrated to the United States back in 2003 from Puebla, Mexico. He says that even though he wasn’t born in the US he grew up here and doesn’t remember anything about Mexico. The only way he was able to connect with his family’s culture was through the traditions and customs his family shared with him such as their native language, food, and holidays. Growing up Jesus shares that his environment pushed him into hiding who he was because of a ‘Machista’ mindset. Being Mexican he says in a predominantly white school put a label on his back to his peers and teachers that said “he isn’t actually serious about school” and he says he had to work twice as hard in his higher-level classes to be seen as equal to his white counterparts. Through various nonprofit organizations such as the Minority Student Achievement Network, Students Against Violence Everywhere Jesus says he was able to hear about the issues minorities face and learned about the value of youth advocacy and activism. In the future, Jesus hopes to have received his degree in Community and Justice and work in a school system to help motivate and inspire children to be their authentic selves and fight for minorities’ rights. Most importantly he is super honored to work with an organization that serves authentic Salvadorian food with a side of JUSTICE!
Sophmore at Meredith College in Raleigh, NC
Neidy Valeria Estrada Olmeda was born in Mexico City but raised in North Carolina Raleigh since the age of 4. Valeria, now a DACA recipient. A label that has led her to face countless obstacles yet, it is the label that has molded her into a resilient person. As the child of immigrant parents, as a first-generation high school graduate trying to pursue higher education she has had to self-advocate, translate, and make the most out of her situation. Valeria is now passionate about advocating for the Hispanic community with the platforms she has had the privilege of obtaining.
With the help of Pupusas for Education she will attend Meredith College in the fall. Valeria is beyond grateful to be a part of an organization that understands what she stand for and why.
Freshman at Christian Brothers University in Memphis, TN
2021 schoalr Sharon G. Urrutia-Moreira was born in Escuintla, Guatemala and came to North Carolina when she was only two years old. She stated that she faces many obstacles as she grew and had trouble finding her identity due to the fact that she spoke little to no spanish. As she continued to grow, she began to learn more about her beautiful culture and began to learn to write, read and speak in spanish. Not only that, she promised her family that she would go to college and pursue the "american dream." She stated that it was diffifuclt, she went through many sleepless nights and even had more thoughts on giving up but she continued to fight through it and hopes others will do the same no matter how hard it gets. She will be majoring in nursing to become a pediatric nurse. Sharon hopes one day she will open her own organization later on in life to help students like herself bloom and pursue their dream of going into a higher education after high school. She believes that it wasn't the proper documentation or "papers" that defined her worth. It is her determination and eagerness to make something of herself, combined with the acceptance of her identity that giver her values. She hopes to set forth the pieces necessary for like minded invdividuals to come along and contribute to that puzzle until our society decides that there is no longer a need for its fulfillment.
Freshman at Guilford Technical Community College in Jamestown, NC
2021 scholar Cesar Torres Rodriguez plans on attending Guilford Technical Community College to major in construction management. Born in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, he later arrived in North Carolina at the age of 3. Raised by a single mother, he realized at a young age the huge sacrifice his mother made for him to have a better future in the United States. Cesar says, “I am very honored to be chosen by Pupusas for Education because this is an opportunity that allows me to pursue a higher education and use it to help others in my community.”
2nd National Pupusa Day Celebration
We're back with another National Pupusa Day! As a celebration for re-opening in summer 2021 after shutting down in 2020 due to the pandemic, we're celebrating Durham, the Salvadoran and our Central American community with pupusas! Save-the-Date for our second celebration of the staple dish of El Salvador here in Durham, North Carolina! Invite your friends!
Undocumented students earn their way into some of the best colleges across the country. Inability to pay due to lack of financial aid is an educational inequity we are tackling head on by providing last-dollar scholarships for undocumented students to attend college. Higher education and scholarships to access it have played a key role in our lives and the lives of those on the Pupusas for Education team. We hope to play a key role in yours.
Jeymi is a junior at Durham Technical Community College finishing her associates in arts and community interpreting diploma with the hopes of transferring later. Jeymi was born in Honduras. As an undocumented student herself she believes that everyone should be given the chance to receive higher education without any barriers and obstacles. Every dream counts. She joined the Pupusas for Education team in early 2020. Her favorite pupusa is zucchini con queso!
Cecilia is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill where she was a Morehead-Cain Scholar and a Global Gap Year Fellow through the Campus Y. She started So Good Pupusas with her family while she was in undergrad in 2015 and the non-profit Pupusas for Education in 2016. She majored in Global Studies with a minor in Geography, received a Business Essentials certificate from Kenan Flagler, and is currently working on a certificate in Non-Profit Management from UNC. She believes business can be a force for good and that pupusas can change the world. Her favorite pupusa is Chicharon con queso, extra crispy.