Mariam Koanda
Hostos Civil Engineering student Mariam Koanda has been selected as a finalist for the 2020-2021 Vanguard Award. 
The award recognizes outstanding post-secondary-level students enrolled in Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs that prepare them for careers that are non-traditional for their gender.
“As a Civil Engineering student at Hostos Community College… being a finalist of the Vanguard Award is the most amazing and encouraging news that I could have wished for,” Koanda shared. “This first step will help me motivate and appeal to students to pursue a non-traditional career.”
Created in 1993, the award is conferred by the Nontraditional Employment and Training (NET) Program, Center for Women in Government and Civil Society at the University of Albany, SUNY. Koanda is one of 15 finalists for the award and was nominated for by Hostos faculty member Nieves Angulo.
"She is the perfect picture of what Eugenio María de Hostos saw in women long ago: motivation, perseverance, and a strong focus to get an education to realize a dream and contribute in a field in which women are underrepresented, thus tearing down barriers that still exist in our time in the 21st Century,” Angulo said. “As a professor, I am so proud of Mariam and her accomplishments in life. I truly believe that our work as educators is being confirmed and has real meaning when students like Mariam shine a clear light in the darkest moments we are living through at the present time."
Koanda, who expects to graduate in the spring of 2021, expressed gratitude to Professor Angulo for her support. “I can always count on her, as she always says to me. People like Dr. Angulo exist at Hostos, and they are working hard to guide us students to find our way to a bright future,” she said.
Finalists are asked to complete an essay about the importance of non-traditional careers and why they have chosen to pursue a non-traditional career. Eight finalists will be selected for the award. Awardees will be announced on February 24.
Congratulations, Mariam! Hostos is rooting for you!