Scholar Category: Animals and Environment

Leo Banuelos-Rivera

Major: Construction Management, Minor in Entrepreneurship

Project: Finding a possibility of reusing construction material rather than it just being thrown out. Anything from drywall, and plywood to cabinets, and more, etc. After the material is damaged, just barely or even left over. A lot of times it is thrown out rather than saved or recycled.

Inspiration: I began working construction in September 2021 and was surprised when they’d tell me, “just throw it out”, and it could be material that was still good for a purpose. Maybe not at the time, but eventually it could have been used or rather donated somewhere to be used.

Future Goals: I’d like to reach out to an organization that has begun doing such things already, One I have found in the Denver area is “Perks Deconstruction”, which focuses on salvaging material during demolitions. I’d like to work alongside a group such as theirs to help push the thought of saving material even more.

Maddie Jade Allen

Major: Studio Art

Project: As of now I am unsure, but I am interested in something concerning the arts, racial justice/liberation, LGBTQ+ rights, and/or environmental causes

Inspiration: As a black lesbian woman (who is pursuing a career in the arts), I have personal connections to all of the subject matter listed above (including environmental matters as I have seen my communities be directly impacted by climate change).

Goals for future: I would like to raise awareness and encourage people to take action by reminding them of their personal power and influence, and also providing specific actions to take to cultivate meaningful progress.


David Purcella

Project: Teaching and mentoring young disabled students in literacy, and other areas of interest while making them more confident entering their classroom. In addition to teaching and mentoring, I hope to inspire those to further their education and getting a degree.

Inspiration: I am inspired by my history, and how I have previously struggled to learn how to read, write, and speak without facing issues of my own.

Future Plans for Project: I hope that I impact the young students I help, and that they see a positive change in their way of reading, writing, and speaking.