A University of Arkansas at Little Rock freshman with dreams of becoming a high school band director was the recipient of this year’s Richard Family Fund Scholarship.
The $1,000 scholarship will be of immense help to Cesar Guerra Gonzalez, an 18-year-old Little Rock native. The scholarship recognizes academic excellence, and the recipient performs 15 hours of community service with a community agency working with the Hispanic community.
“I thought it was pretty neat to win the scholarship,” Guerra Gonzalez said. “It’s encouraging me to keep working hard and do well in school. I’m looking forward to volunteering. I would like to serve as a volunteer translator or something else that would help the Hispanic community.”
Guerra Gonzalez’s love of music began at Central High School, where he learned to play the trumpet and marched in the band. He is a member of UA Little Rock’s Wind Ensemble and Jazz Band while also learning to play the piano. He hopes all these skills will be a boon to his future career.
“I love to work with kids and help them improve as musicians,” he said. “I would love to be a band director for high school and middle school students one day.”
Guerra Gonzalez is also a recipient of the Children International Hope Scholarship, the Trojan Pathway Scholarship, the Deans’ Academic Merit Scholarship, and the Joan Taylor Scholarship.
On the weekends, Guerra Gonzalez works as a server at Cracker Barrel and at his family’s flea market food stand, a recent development for his parents, Gilberto and Elvira Guerra.
“My dad is a steel worker, and last year he started making these huge griddles in the garage in the afternoon after work,” Guerra Gonzalez said. “I asked them what they were for, and he said so we can make quesadillas. Now, every Friday afternoon, we all go to my aunt’s house to prepare different ingredients, and, on Saturdays, I help my family sell Mexican food at their food stand.”