Mrs. Diva Vargas de Gil graduated with honors from National University of Colombia with a degree in chemistry, becoming a trailblazer for women with this technical degree. Despite cultural norms for that time and as a young lady pursuing a career in STEM, she began her career with an entry-level lab job at ECOPETROL, a Colombian oil company. Through hard work with her pioneering spirit, she eventually became the highest-ranking female executive at the company, leading teams of engineers and researchers in a male-dominated world.
Diva demonstrated that through hard work, discipline, and a commitment to excellence, it doesn't matter how others may judge you or stereotype you as you achieve great success. Mrs. Diva Vargas de Gil passed away in August 2011, after a 10-year battle with cancer. She left an impactful legacy that influences everything from corporate policies for women, to mentoring and coaching many women that followed in her footsteps.
This scholarship is established in recognition of her spirit as a leader, passionate advocate, and example of excellence strong enough to defy the odds. Synonymous with her legacy, her middle name Aurora means "dawn," the rising of light, the beginning of sunrise, and the pursuit of what is possible. The Aurora Hispanic Leadership Endowed Scholarship has been established by Liliana Gil-Valletta and Chris Valletta in honor of Diva Aurora Vargas de Gil.
Scholarship award requirements
The Aurora Hispanic Leadership Endowed Scholarship will be awarded to junior and senior students who have demonstrated purpose, talent, and leadership.