India Mazzaro recently received two impressive awards. She was named a 2017 Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Gold Scholar, an award given to just 50 community college students across the nation that includes a $1,500 scholarship. In addition, she is one of the top 10 students on the Phi Theta Kappa All-Virginia Academic Team.
The 20-year-old Centreville resident felt honored to receive this recognition. “I have worked hard throughout my educational career so it just goes to show that hard work pays off,” she said.
India will graduate in May 2017 summa cum laude with an associate degree in liberal arts with an international studies specialization.
“I choose to study international relations because I love learning about other cultures and have always had a knack for learning languages which is a highly valued skill in the field,” she said.
The Manassas Campus student maintained a 4.0 grade point average while participating in Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. As the events coordinator for Phi Theta Kappa, she developed new volunteer ideas, learned how to work with different people, and met many motivated and dedicated students.
“I recently attended a banquet for the Phi Theta Kappa scholarship program, met students from community colleges around the nation and brought back ideas that I hope will be implemented soon,” she said.
When India graduated from Westfield High School in 2015, she was awarded a NOVA Honors Program Scholarship which provides $10,000 to attend NOVA.
“I was unsure about attending NOVA and the Honors Scholarship persuaded me to come and I am so happy I did. I was able to get my general education courses out of the way without spending a ton of money and I had experiences I would not have had at a four-year school such as attending conferences and receiving scholarships. I think this will make me more competitive in the job and internship market because I have experiences that many sophomores at a four-year school may lack,” she said.
India tells other students who are considering NOVA that college is all about the effort you invest. “NOVA can be super rewarding if you put in the effort. I have grown so much at NOVA and definitely achieved better grades than I would have at a four-year school. I also encourage students to look into NOVA’s Honors Program. The Honors Program is amazing and I would not have done half the things I’ve done at NOVA without it,” she said.
India is transferring to Virginia Tech where she plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in foreign affairs with a minor in Arabic.
Congratulations, India, and best wishes at Virginia Tech and beyond.
Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through the Extended Learning Institute. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.