Outgoing Flinn Scholars to pursue graduate studies and careers as new alumni

May 13, 2024

By brianpowell

The outgoing class of Flinn Scholars, which entered the program at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, has made the most of its undergraduate experience over the past four years.

The Scholars, who attended Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, and the University of Arizona, traveled to France for a group seminar—a longtime component of the Flinn Scholars Program—were honored with university and community awards, and have now chosen paths of study and work near home in Arizona and around the world, from Los Angeles to London to Japan.

The Scholars majored in neuroscience and cognitive science, creative writing, chemical engineering, molecular and cellular biology, English, history, geology, Latin American Studies, mathematics, physiology and medical sciences, business data analytics, finance, and many other fields of study.

The outgoing Flinn Scholars, most representing the Class of 2020, were active on their university campuses, as researchers and leaders in clubs and organizations, and in the larger community as interns, volunteers at nonprofit organizations, and even a youth basketball coach.

The outgoing Flinn Scholars are:

Koda Benavidez: Will work as a research technician in UArizona’s Applied Math Department before becoming an engineering apprentice at Resource Exchange International.

Zoe Benson: Will teach English in Japan through the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program before beginning medical school.

Max Bregman: Will continue to work as CEO of BreatheEV in Tempe.

Catherine Broski: Will work in sustainability and policy in San Diego.

Anya Chaudhry: Will attend medical school and pursue an M.D./MBA dual degree.

Risha Das: Will pursue a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering.

Isabella Maria Espinoza: Will pursue graduate/professional school in the future.

Sofia Arlea Fencken: Will enter the workforce before applying to a Latin American Studies master’s program.

Simon Field: Will enter the workforce in the engineering field and continue to play music professionally around Arizona.

Claire Gibson: Will work full time as an associate researcher at NAU.

Julia Groman: Will pursue a master’s degree in conflict resolution and negotiation at Tel Aviv University.

Nikolas Gruber: Will attend UArizona to earn a master’s degree in chemical engineering.

Heather Laurel Jensen: Will pursue a Ph.D. in social and affective neuroscience at UCLA.

Mira Kaibara: Will pursue a master’s degree in global health at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Violet King: Will pursue a Ph.D. in language revitalization at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa.

Dermot Louchart: Will enter the workforce or attend graduate school.

Mark Macluskie: Will pursue a career in the field of sound engineering.

Christina Niyigena: After completing neuroscience and finance degrees in December, will pursue a career as a financial planner.

Priscilla Villalobos Ixcotoyac: Will pursue a master’s degree in biology at ASU.

Alexa Wiese: Will attend veterinary school at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

The 20 outgoing Scholars were honored at the annual Flinn Scholars Recognition Luncheon on May 4 at The Scott Resort & Spa in Scottsdale. They join the active Flinn Scholar alumni community of more than 650 people impacting the world from Arizona and beyond. 

The recognition luncheon also featured the introduction of the Class of 2024 Flinn Scholars and the honoring of 20 “Distinguished Educators” selected by the incoming class.

The merit-based Flinn Scholarship, valued at more than $130,000, covers the cost of tuition, fees, housing, meals, and study abroad at one of Arizona’s three state universities. The Flinn Scholars Program, supported by the Flinn Foundation in partnership with the universities, is now in its 39th year.

Read more:

2024 Flinn Scholars to receive full rides to Arizona public universities

Arizona teachers, counselors, mentors honored by 2024 Flinn Scholars