International Award for Possibilities recipients join Brock team

Eduardo Retes worked his whole life with the goal of attending university abroad. But, when his home country of Honduras fell into political unrest and the economy plummeted, his ambition seemed out of reach.

Retes is one of two students to receive the inaugural International Award for Possibilities, which covers the four-year tuition cost worth nearly $90,000.

“I pictured a future ahead of me and this is making it possible,” the 18-year-old said Thursday during a pro-sports style event in Market Hall. Retes, who is living in residence and is in the Business Administration Co-op program, plans to tryout for the Brock Badgers varsity baseball team.

“I’m truly grateful that it was given to me. I know how the world is, there are limited opportunities for people,” Retes said. “I’m thankful to everyone at Brock who actually thought that I was the right person to take this opportunity. It’s a dream come true.”

Alex Granja Jimenez, from Ecuador, said the scholarship is aptly named as it really is offering him possibilities he wouldn’t otherwise have had.

“It helped me leave my country,” he said. “Without the scholarship I wouldn’t have been able to attend school out of Ecuador. It opens so much opportunities – to live abroad, meet new people and live a different lifestyle.”

Granja Jimenez, who is taking the Business and Economics Co-op and plans to tryout for soccer, said the program offers everything he was looking for in a post-secondary education.

“To be able to graduate and have work experience was very important for me,” he said.
His mother Maria Jimenez, who was at Brock to help him settle in, said she’s proud of her son and thankful to Brock for the opportunity.

We chose them to join the Brock team because we believe in their potential.

“ I know this is a huge thing for his future,” she said. “For my family, it’s very important. It means a lot to us and to his school also.”

Shari Sekel, Associate Director, Marketing, Recruitment and Market Development, said Retes and Granja Jimenez are Brock’s “top draft picks” and called them “intellectual athletes who best demonstrated positive contributions to their community and show potential that would be stifled without this opportunity.”
“We chose them to join the Brock team because we believe in their potential,” she added.

Acting President Brian Hutchings welcomed the new students and presented them with jerseys, Badger hats and an International Award for Possibilities plaque.

“Upon graduation, you will be part of a very important team, of 85,000 Brock alumni here at Brock University,” he said.

Sekel said the award was created with the intention of fostering positive contributions around the world by future Brock alumni.

It is given to high school students from Brock’s partner schools. Typically, one award will be made available to each partner school in a year of eligibility.

Retes and Granja Jimenez are the first two recipients.


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