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Meet our Scholars

Class of 2025

Jordan Abreu Jordan Abreu
New Jersey
Perth Amboy High School
Chemical Engineering

I have decided to join these clubs because of my passion for chemical engineering and my pursuit to be a leader. As for SOLES I still want to be connected to my culture. As for being a BESTie the experiences, I have with them will never be forgotten. Though everything was virtual we really became a big family, staying up doing homework together and talking about mundane topics and just talking about the next big thing. Within six weeks the other BESTies really became a support system that I knew I could rely on no matter what. The BEST program alone has prepared me for the college workload and how to prevent burnout and mental strain.
Ryan Baralt  Ryan Baralt
Abbott Lawrence Academy
Mechanical or Electrical Engineering
Anime Club, Caribbean Students Organization, Black Students Union, Tabletop Club

I have enjoyed the welcoming and supportive community here at Tufts. BEST has been an excellent support system on top of an already amazing experience! BEST has made my transition into Tufts much easier. I am confident that I will succeed greatly with all the friends and resources I have to rely on.
Junior Davis  Junior Davis
New York
Success Academy High School of the Liberal Arts
Mechanical Engineering
BSU, Running Club, CSO, Robotics Club, and ESC

From the moment I hopped on the first zoom for BEST to the moment I stepped on campus every encounter I have had has made me feel more at home and welcome despite our given circumstances. BEST gave me a family, opened new social doors, and friendly competition that I will carry for the next 4 years and the rest of my life.
Ricardo (Cardi) Garcia Mendez Ricardo (Cardi) Garcia Mendez
Mickey Leland College Prep
Mechanical Engineering
Robotics, SOLES, Boxers on a Hill, Anime Club

I applied to Tufts in the hopes of finding a community that accepted me for who I am. Since I first stepped on campus I felt the sense of community Tufts is known for. I feel welcomed and part of something greater than me, part of a community that is interested in my well being and growth and that cares about me as an Individual. BEST is a closer look at how much Tufts cares about communities, resources and support for students like me.
Roberto Gonzalez Cabrera  Roberto Gonzalez Cabrera
East Palo Alto Academy
Chemical Engineering
Cycling Club, Tufts Bikes, SALAS, SOLES, LATINX

Committing to Tufts not yet visiting the campus, state, or environment, I took a leap of faith. I knew Tufts had the best support out there for first-generation and people of color, the Bridge to Engineering Success at Tufts demonstrated the effort Tufts put into aiding people like me. I was able to take courses during the summer which prepared me for the fall and not to mention create a bond with students who had similar backgrounds like me. The BEST cohort 12 was not just my peers but a second family I could count on whenever I felt alone. I am glad to have taken that leap.
Jocasta Johnson  Jocasta Johnson
James Hubert Blake High School
Biomedical Engineering
The Well, Tufts Buddhist Mindfulness Sangha Meditation, Intervarsity, The Indigenous Students’ Organization, Best Buddies, Society of Women Engineers

I am excited to be a part of the Tufts School of Engineering because of the academic rigor, resources, and opportunities that are provided for minorities, low-income students, and first-generation students. I know there is a community of faculty I can lean on if I am feeling uncertain, so the Tufts environment gives me a great amount of confidence in my academic abilities as well as my overall future. I know with the opportunities available to me I will be able to thrive in my career path, even though my starting point may have had different obstacles than my peers! I am proud to be a Tufts Engineer :)
Josh Lamothe  Josh Lamothe
Foxboro Regional Charter School
Biomedical Engineering
Water Polo Club, and the Engineering Student Council

I have really enjoyed my time here at Tufts so far, the program and the community have been amazing.
Migdalia Lopez Jimenez  Migdalia Lopez Jimenez
Montevallo High School, Shelby County Career Technical Education
Human Factors Engineering
Society of Latinx Engineers and Scientists (SOLES), Society of Women Engineers (SWE), QuestBridge Scholars Network (QSN), Tufts Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (THFES), Kickboxing on the Hill, and Engineering Student Council (ESC)

BEST has gifted me the opportunity to meet passionate and intellectually curious students that I can comfortably call family now. The BEST community helped ease the transition to college with welcoming and understanding advisors and professors. Tufts specifically has granted me access to world of POC in STEM at the Center for STEM Diversity where we have met professionals, and explored the different fields of engineering. I cannot wait to see what the next four years hold for me and my BESTies.
Jesus Naranjo  Jesus Naranjo
West High School
Computer Science
Engineers Without Borders, Fencing

I liked the sense of making friends through the summer and simultaneously creating a support group that I can converse with about life-changing events even in a place where I am not comfortable with myself or my surroundings. Tufts is a place of community where you can have academic debates with anyone and converse with almost everyone. BEST summer supported me during the summer and beginning of college and gave me a picture of what type of institution I was committing myself to, making the uncertainty of the unknown go away.
Taisha Pierre  Taisha Pierre
Waltham High School
Computer Science (intended)
Caribbean Students Organization, Black Student Union, National Society for Black Engineers (NSBE), Society of Latinx Engineers and Students (SOLES)

The BEST and FIRST Center community has quickly become like a family to me and they embraced the 12 of us with open arms. I'm overwhelmed with the amount of support that Tufts allowed us access to as students of color and FGLI in a community where we are the minority and feel the most alone. Although the BEST summer was a challenge, I would recommend people to join communities like these at Tufts.
Victor Vazquez Victor Vazquez
New Heights Charter School of Brockton
Electrical Engineering
Boxers on the Hill, Encendido

As a wide-eyed Puerto Rican in a gigantic world, Victor loved to dream and not settle for less. He chose Tufts as a reach school and was elated to join the Tufts Community to learn and grow as a person. The fact that Tufts had a huge library system, and many socializing opportunities was only a plus. During the summer of 2021, Victor was given the opportunity to partake in the wonderful program BEST. It was during those 6 weeks of studying and perseverance that he found his BEST peers as a pillar of support. Victor had the pleasure of socializing with his Besties and gaining a small network before he even stepped on campus. Victor is incredibly excited for what comes next in this Tufts chapter of his life, he feels “blessed for these amazing opportunities, and awesome friends that I met in BEST”.
Madanna Vue Madanna Vue
Hmong College Prep Academy
Biomedical Engineering
Biomedical Engineering Society, Engineering Student Council

The best program was a great opportunity to glean insight on the rigor and environment of a college student at Tufts. I’m extremely grateful for the experience and for the community I’ve created from the BEST summer. I love knowing that when I come on campus, I will have peers around me who I can count on. After being on campus, the same community fromBEST was mirrored. Everyone is extremely friendly and open to meeting new people. Through my first week at Tufts and my BEST summer, I feel prepared to take on my engineering courses and am looking forward to the new opportunities ahead.