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Student Stories

Santana Garcia Chang


Santana Garcia Chang

Questa High School Class of 2011

As I walked through the door of the Bridges Project, the counselors immediately welcomed me and my son with open arms. Bridges is a great program that assists students with everything, from scholarships to financial aid. They encouraged me to apply for top scholarships that I would have never dreamed of receiving or becoming a close candidate for. It’s a wonderful non-profit organization that goes above and beyond to help people in our community continue their education or return to school.

Santana was the salutatorian of her high school graduating class. She received numerous prestigious scholarships, including awards from Los Alamos National Labs and New Mexico Educators Federal Credit Union. She studied at a branch campus of the University of New Mexico and completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering in 2015. She currently interns at Los Alamos National Labs.



Majdolene Khweis


Majdolene Khweis

Taos High School Class of 2011

Because I come from an immigrant family, the college process is foreign to my parents. With Bridges’ help my older sister is now attending Georgetown University. I set up an appointment the summer before my senior year because I felt lost and did not know where to begin. What is truly amazing is the level of personal attention I received. Bridges helps numerous other students like myself with the very same process. Despite the large number of students who receive college counseling, each person receives the utmost care and attention.

Majdolene attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology and graduated in 2015 with a BS in Environmental Engineering. She was the recipient of scholarships from Coca-Cola, the Daniels Fund and Los Alamos National Labs, among many others. At present, she works for an environmental consulting firm in San Francisco, CA.



Ruth Lovato-Dale


Ruth Lovato-Dale

UNM-Taos Class of 2012

Continuing your education is not age specific. At UNM-Taos there are students of all ages. There should never be a time when you say that you’re too old to go to school. I’m actually a better student now! I started working in local art galleries in 1976, but the art world has changed. I decided to go into a program that would be versatile and I’m working on an associate degree in business computers. Bridges helped both my daughter and me with our financial aid for college.

Ruth is a multi-talented and highly energetic mother of three.



Zia Martinez Rutledge


Zia Martinez Rutledge

Taos High School Class of 2010

Bridges is an amazing organization that helped me through every stage of my college preparation from registering for the entrance exams, to moving through the selection process, to acquiring financial aid. I came to Bridges for the first time during my junior year with a specific college in mind, and the counselors helped me take the steps required to get in to this college. As a first generation college student, there were many aspects of the college process that my parents were unfamiliar. The counselors answered all of our questions and we learned a lot. However, they went beyond answering questions, they simplified the entire process and spent extra time putting together spreadsheets and doing their own research to make everything easier for me. The staff is caring, dedicated and very knowledgeable. I would have had a very difficult time getting to where I am now without Bridges.

Zia graduated from Occidental College in 2014.