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Student Profiles

Raechel Guevara
Raechel Guevara

Small Town, Big Dreams

From Patterson to a promising future, Raechel Guevara’s inspirational journey

In the heart of California’s Central Valley is a quaint little town called Patterson, with a history rooted in agriculture. Known as the “apricot capital of the world,” it represents a mix of ethnic backgrounds, reflecting the cultural diversity of California as a whole. However, for Raechel Guevara, Class of 2025 and the recipient of the Jack and Carolyn Lewis Family Scholarship Endowment Fund, it was also a place where higher educational opportunities for high school students were scarce. Guevara says, “I come from a community where few of us can attend college. My high school was severely underfunded, and I was surrounded by classmates who did not want to further their education or people who didn’t even graduate high school.” But Guevara refused to let her circumstances define her destiny.

Her hopes and aspirations fueled her journey to achieving her academic goals. Guevara understood what it would take to get there and stated, “Growing up, I knew I needed to work harder than most if I wanted to achieve a higher education.” She spent countless nights studying, reviewing textbooks, and working on her assignments. Her grades were solid, and her determination was unwavering. She adds, “There were many obstacles I faced growing up, but I never let the nature of my situation determine my future.” Moreover, her hard work paid off. Guevara was offered financial assistance and the opportunity to attend our esteemed institution. She is incredibly grateful for the kindness she has received through the Jack and Carolyn Lewis Family Scholarship. 

“Receiving this scholarship has immensely impacted my life; without it, I would not have been able to attend Santa Clara University,” Guevara says and continues, “I am the first in my family ever to attend college. Because of this, I am reminded how lucky I am, and I make the most of every day here. I get excited to go to class, to learn something new, to network with new people, and to develop skills for my future career.” 

Established by long-time supporters Jack and Carolyn Lewis and their family, including daughter Anne Lewis Naragon, ’87, a member of the Board of Regents, the fund was created to offer deserving undergraduates the possibility of having a Santa Clara Jesuit education. While Jack, a prominent trustee, passed away in 2022, his legacy lives on through the accomplishments of exceptional students, like Guevara.

As a major in management information systems at the Leavey School of Business, Guevara is excited to be part of the prestigious school, which recently marked 100 years since opening its doors in 1923. From thirty-five students then to enrolling more than 2,500 today in all of its programs, Guevara feels connected to the vibrant energy and vision to become a well-rounded business leader for Silicon Valley and beyond. She is already getting a head start by working as a data and analytics sustainability coordinator at the University’s Center for Sustainability. She is excited to be part of their efforts to reduce energy emissions, decrease food waste, and promote sustainable actions on campus for faculty, staff, and students.

And if carrying a full load in school and working wasn’t enough, Guevara is also a critical thinking and writing (CTW) peer educator for Professor Kai Harris’s English class for LEAD Scholars—a program designed to assist first-generation college students with the necessary tools and resources to be successful. Guevara states, “This is my second year being a part of LEAD staff, where I helped incoming first-year students transition into college. I lead group discussions and hold office hours for CTW students, helping them improve their writing skills. My goal is to create a welcoming space in the classroom where no student feels ashamed to share their work.” As for the future, Guevara has career plans in database management systems. 

The dreams that Guevara have nurtured as a child had indeed taken her far beyond the horizon. She is proving that it doesn’t matter where you came from; what is important is the strength of your ambitions, the determination to see them through, and the kindness of others. She says, “I am forever indebted to the Lewis family for changing the trajectory of my life.” Guevara now represents her small town as a symbol of hope and possibility.