Gregoria Arreola-Meza and Karen Guadalupe Cruz-Ruiz Announced as Women as Leaders Scholarship Winners

Gregoria Arreola-Meza and Karen Guadalupe Cruz-Ruiz Announced as Women as Leaders Scholarship Winners

January 22, 2019
Shot of Downtown Winston-Salem with Salem College in the foreground.

Gregoria Arreola-Meza and Karen Guadalupe Cruz-Ruiz named Women as Leaders Scholarship Winners

Congratulations to Gregoria Arreola-Meza and Karen Guadalupe Cruz-Ruiz as the winners of our Women as Leaders Scholarship winners! Both high school students from Winston-Salem and Greensboro respectively have received full-tuition scholarships to attend Salem College this fall. Their service to their communities is unending and we look forward to welcoming Gregoria and Karen to our own Salem family. 

As a student of Robert B. Glenn High School, Gregoria recently coordinated an event at her high school to assist students and their families with completing their FAFSA and Residency correctly. Gregoria recognized that the FAFSA process can be overwhelming to to students with undocumented parents. She did not want other students to give up on the college application process due to complications with their information. Gregoria’s event was immensely helpful to students as their families and undoubtedly made a college education more attainable and affordable for many of her fellow students.

Gregoria is also very active with the Red Cross Club and the Spanish Club at her high school. She is currently the President for the 2018-2019 year for the Red Cross Club. One of the biggest events that Gregoria helps organize with the Red Cross Club are the school blood drives. The Red Cross Club hosts three yearly blood drives where students participate in different roles helping nurses and donors throughout the event. Gregoria also helps the Red Cross Club bake cookies for Hospice during the holiday season to help brighten patients’ spirits as well as their families. She is also the President of Spanish Club. Through her involvement with Spanish Club, Gregoria has helped the club give support to the Winston-Salem Homeless Shelter where the club donates over 100 bags filled with clothing items, hygiene products, and an inspirational quote attached to each bag. Gregoria also helps the Spanish Club lead its biggest effort–Operacion Feliz Navidad (Operation Merry Christmas)–each year. The Spanish Club adopts an elementary school to deliver gifts to personally, where their efforts are well-rewarded with seeing all the smiling faces from kids at the elementary school. 


Service has been a formative and rewarding experience for Karen Guadalupe Cruz-Ruiz as well. She began volunteering at the Craft Recreation Center in Greensboro, North Carolina, where she worked with children in low-income neighborhoods. During her junior year of high school Karen also volunteered at Jones Elementary School. She offered support as a tutor to kids where she assisted them with their classwork, language development, and helped them identify future aspirations. Karen sought to inspire the kids to succeed in an environment where children are at risk for being overlooked thus providing them with new opportunities. 

Karen also represents her high school as Miss Middle College at Bennett College. In her position as Miss Middle College she collaborates with the rest of Student Government to address issues such as breast cancer, homelessness, and hunger. The group has donated blankets and greeting cards to Moses Cone Hospital as well as setting up a pantry drive and donating blankets to the local homeless shelter. During Karen’s junior year of high school she represented her high school in the Superintendent’s Advisory Council where she helped promote a better environment for students in Guilford County. Karen has also participated in the 4-H Club of North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University where she helped highlight alternatives to drug and alcohol abuse. Most recently she has joined the non-profit organization Let’s Learn Triad where she helps the organization realize its mission of procuring tuition equity for immigrant youth in North Carolina. 

Congratulations again to Gregoria and Karen. We are excited and honored that they will be joining our community!