San Benito graduate receives aspiring teacher scholarship

SAN BENITO — For Keyla Ochoa, becoming a teacher is a career she has always felt inspired to pursue.

From gaining hands-on experience through her high school’s Career and Technical Education program to watching her mother teach fourth grade writing, Keyla has been conditioning herself to master the skill of teaching.

And as a recent graduate of San Benito High School, Keyla is set to begin the next chapter of her journey toward becoming a future educator this fall at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, where she plans to major in interdisciplinary studies with a concentration in bilingual education.

Her recent accomplishment

Keyla is one of 11 UTRGV students to receive a Charles Butt Scholarship for Aspiring Teachers.

More than 370 candidates applied for the scholarship and only 134 were selected.

As a recipient of the scholarship, Keyla will receive $8,000 annually for up to four years.

Additionally, she will receive ongoing training, mentorship and networking opportunities through the Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation.

Here is what Keyla had to say about receiving the Charles Butt Scholarship for Aspiring Teachers.

VMS: Did you feel confident that you would receive the scholarship or were you nervous?

Keyla: I was actually a bit nervous about the application. I told my teacher that I wasn’t sure if I should apply. She told me to try it and if it didn’t work out that I’ll know I at least tried. So, I went ahead and submitted the application, hoped for the best and it all worked out.

VMS: How did you react when you found out you won the scholarship?

Keyla: When I found out, I cried and called my mom. I was at church and I was just super excited.

VMS: Why do you want to become a teacher?

Keyla: I’ve always wanted to be a teacher. My mom is a fourth grade writing teacher so I grew up around that environment. It was really eye-opening to see how she touched a lot of students’ lives.

VMS: Is there anything else you would like to say that I haven’t asked?

Keyla: I’m really excited to be in the classroom and inspire other students. I just really want to show them that they have so much worth and help them find their path in life.


WHO — Keyla Ochoa

HOMETOWN — San Benito

HIGH SCHOOL — San Benito High School

COLLEGE — The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

MAJOR — Interdisciplinary studies with a concentration in bilingual education