A former Pueblo City Schools administrator has given more than $300,000 to Colorado State University-Pueblo to establish the Josephine Montoya DeLeon Scholarship Fund to benefit non-traditional students and community college transfers in Southern Colorado.
In her nearly four decades of service to Pueblo and its youth as a counselor and assistant principal, Josephine Montoya DeLeon saw students and colleagues who wanted to achieve a dream of either finishing a bachelor’s degree, adding a second degree, or pursuing additional education as life-long learners.
She left a legacy when she was named the first female, Hispanic assistant principal at Central High School in Pueblo. Montoya DeLeon was hired by District 60 in 1970 as a teacher coordinator at East High School and, over the next few years, she served as a counselor at Centennial, Central, and East high schools. She served as assistant principal at Central High from 1981-85, at Centennial High from 1986-92, and at South High from 1993 until her retirement in 1997.
Education is her passion as evidenced by her three master’s degrees in counseling, vocational education, and educational administration.
“I want to be part of improving young students’ lives or be the reason students complete or achieve a higher level of education,” she said. “If we set higher expectations, then it won’t be doubted that education is a necessity.”
To be eligible for the scholarship, recipient(s) must be a full-time non-traditional (older, returning student, etc.) CSU-Pueblo student. Students must be from Southern Colorado, must provide proof of their academic or professional accomplishments as well as the dedication to their studies. Recipients can be pursuing either a bachelor or master’s degree and must maintain a 3.0 GPA.
The first scholarship(s) to be awarded from the Josephine Montoya DeLeon Scholarship Fund will be for the 2008-2009 scholarship year. Scholarships will be dispersed evenly to provide for as many scholarships as the fund will allow, based on the needs of the CSU-Pueblo non-traditional student pool.
CSU-Pueblo President Joseph Garcia said that, as an educator, Montoya DeLeon witnessed daily the transformative powers of education.
“I am both inspired by Josephine and grateful to her for her vision to provide scholarship assistance to the non-traditional students, who often balance significant work and family challenges to pursue their personal and professional dreams,” Garcia said.
Colorado State University - Pueblo is a regional, comprehensive university emphasizing professional, career-oriented, and applied programs. Displaying excellence in teaching, celebrating diversity, and engaging in service and outreach, CSU-Pueblo is distinguished by access, opportunity, and the overall quality of services provided to its students.