BNP Paribas and Bank of the West, global leaders in supporting both amateur and professional tennis, have awarded the fourth annual BNP Paribas Open Scholarships to Daniel Ramirez (Desert Mirage High School); Maria Lopez (Desert Mirage High School); Emily Santillanes (Coachella Valley High School); and Gilberto German (Coachella Valley High School).
“BNP Paribas is very happy to present these four outstanding students with scholarships,” said Jean-Yves Fillion, CEO of BNP Paribas USA and Chairman of CIB Americas. “Daniel, Maria, Emily and Gilberto have all made significant contributions both on and off the court to their respective communities, families and schools, as well as shown tremendous dedication to their studies. We are proud this year to expand our scholarships to help even more deserving students pursue their dreams.”
Each student received a $15,000 college grant on Thursday, March 14 at an event at their school and will be recognized on today during an on-court presentation at the BNP Paribas Open, the largest combined WTA and ATP Tour event in the world. In 2019, the BNP Paribas Open Scholarship program was doubled in size, from two to four recipients.
“These young adults bring passion to all they do, and have demonstrated that they have the ability and ambition to set and achieve goals,” said Nandita Bakhshi, President and Chief Executive Officer at Bank of the West. “It is our hope that the BNP Paribas Open Scholarship will help provide these students with the opportunity to further their education and will assist in opening up a world of possibilities. Congratulations, Maria, Daniel, Gilberto, and Emily – we can’t wait to see what you do next.”
Daniel, a senior at Desert Mirage High School, excels not only in the classroom, but also in extracurricular activities such as Advanced Band and tennis. Demonstrating his leadership abilities by training new members of the team, Daniel was named captain of the tennis team his junior year. He plans to use this scholarship to help him pursue a degree in computer science at UCLA.
Maria has become an integral part of the Desert Mirage High School community, participating in organizations such as varsity tennis, varsity soccer, Aztec Dance, the Youth Organizing Council, Ram Squad Club and more. Maria has excelled in her coursework and hopes to parlay her work ethic into either a Nursing or Psychology degree at Cal State University San Marcos.
Emily has immersed herself in a variety of leadership roles at Coachella Valley High School by joining programs such as the School Site Council, Associate Student Body and the varsity tennis team. She plans to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Education and pursue her goal of teaching English abroad as a foreign language teacher.
As a member of the Coachella Valley High School varsity tennis team, Gilberto has developed a love and passion for the sport. Along with growing his game on-court, he has helped around the local community by volunteering as a ball boy at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden during the Oracle Challenger Series. Gilberto hopes to pursue a degree in either Chemistry or Law Enforcement at Imperial Valley College.