Freshman Rudd scholar wastes no time getting involved on campus 

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Morgan Anderson/The Sunflower

Jordy Mozqueda, a freshman general business major, poses for a photo in front of a mural at Clinton Hall. “I definitely want to look back and say that I left the campus better than it was,” he said.

Jordy Mosqueda is passionate about helping out.

And while the coronavirus has limited in-person activities on campus, the freshman Rudd scholar is still taking steps to have an impact from the jump.

“I definitely found a passion for making an impact with people,” said Mosqueda, who’s majoring in general business. “The first time that I walked into high school, I definitely wanted to make an impact.”

Mosqueda was student body president at Wichita High School South as a senior last year and he was involved in student leadership throughout his high school career. At WSU, he is already a member of the Student Ambassador Society and is seeking a position in the Student Government Association.

Mosqueda also expressed an interest in joining groups that advocate for diverse populations, like the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and HALO, or the Hispanic American Leadership Organization.

As a member of the class of 2020, Mosqueda knows what it looks like when academics are flipped on their head because of the coronavirus. His fellow graduates had to finish their last semester online and missed out on the traditional graduation experience. As student body president at Wichita South, Mosqueda helped other student leaders transition end-of-the-year events like spirit week to an online format.

And in a similar fashion, members of his freshman class will also have quite an unusual introduction to college, with masks, a number of classes online and other guidelines to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

“We’re definitely missing the social aspect, and that’s very needed,” he said. “Social aspects are what help us grow and help us communicate and learn from others.”

Still, Mosqueda is remaining optimistic about entering a new chapter in his life.

“I feel like [the college experience] is going to be a bit less than expected, yes, but I can say, when there’s a will there’s a way,” Mosqueda said. “All college students are going to have to adapt and overcome.”

Alongside freshman orientation, Mosqueda had the chance to get familiarized with WSU through the Passage 2 Success program, a four-day retreat meant to help students from diverse backgrounds transition to college.

Wendy de Loera, a sophomore and fellow Rudd scholar, mentored Mosqueda through the program last week. De Loera said she first knew of Mosqueda when he won the scholarship but has gotten to know him better through Passage 2 Success.

“I know what it takes to be a Rudd scholar, the amount of work, the work ethic that’s needed, so I can relate with Jordy [Mosqueda] really on a lot of that,” she said.

The Rudd Scholarship is a program for Kansas residents who qualify for Pell grants and are planning to attend WSU, Emporia State, or Fort Hays State. According to the program’s site, recipients have to live on campus and maintain a 3.0 GPA, among other rules.

In the time she’s known Mosqueda, De Loera said she can tell he has a bright future ahead.

“He is super passionate about getting involved, making sure he has done everything he can here at WSU,” she said. “He wants to get the most out of the college experience … he has that grit and determination.”

“Even though I am his mentor, I know I can count on him if I ever need anything.”

De Loera said her best advice for Mosqueda and all incoming freshmen is to keep focused on their end goals.

“There are people out here who are willing to help you: there are mentors, friends, family members,” she said. “Stay true to yourself and you will be successful.”

As for Mosqueda, he said he hopes he will look back in four years and say he’s made a difference at WSU.

“I definitely want to look back and say that I left the campus better than it was,” he said. “I know that I’ll be mentoring and helping people as well, and trying to find a way to become a role model in the community — give back to the community where I came from.”