The Friends of Hubbell
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Vetesha Smith is the recipient of the Friends of Hubbell inaugural Sheri Burnham Memorial Scholarship for $3,000. Vetesha, hails from Crownpoint, NM, and is one of four children raised by a single parent. She is the first of her family to attend college. She recently earned an Associate’s Degree in Computer Information Systems.

Vetesha has transferred to the University of Arizona where she will continue her pursuit of a Bachelor of Science degree, specifically focusing on STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, I began to see more newspaper articles from back home where the internet was the topic of discussion because it was very much needed but not as accessible as it would be in towns and cities. In many rural areas on the Navajo Reservation, the telecommunications structure for cellphone towers and internet access is scarce. Tribal and community leaders on the reservation understand and acknowledge how restricted internet access is throughout the reservation. After I earn my degree, I plan on moving back to the reservation in New Mexico to help build a better infrastructure for cellphone, internet service, and improve general technology resources,” Vetesha said.

Vetesha plans to apply her scholarship money toward tuition, student fees, books and technology supplies. “My income does not fully cover my cost of living and my family is not always able to contribute.” She has an anticipated graduation date of December 2024 and looks forward to making her mother proud.
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