Student CCVI Spirit Award

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Nomination Criteria Open
List of Recipients Open

Luis Valdes - Student CCVI Spirit Award Recipient for 2023-2024

Luis Valdes

2023-2024 Student CCVI Spirit Award Recipient

Luis Valdez is this year’s student CCVI award recipient. He is originally from Eagle Pass, Texas, and is studying toward his Bachelor's in Rehabilitation Science with a Pre-PA concentration along with a double minor in biology and psychology. Luis has always had a great love for medicine. At a very young age, he remembers his mother taking him to the pediatrician, he was enamored with the hospital, the tools, and even the smells of the office. His passion for helping others started with experiences where he served low-income families in Mexico, aiding them with food and other needs. Luis credits the growth of his leadership skills to his time as his high school’s youngest drum major, directing over 295 band members. 
Luis’ time at UIW sealed his passion for medicine, where he fell in love with surgery. It was during a project led by Dr. Shandra Esparza and Dr. Ortiz that provided him and his class with an opportunity to collaborate with parents of children with disabilities. From this experience, Luis felt called to engage fellow students in conversations regarding the topic of medical negligence and its near-death impact on children’s lives. This call led to a new student organization: Future Health Care Heroes, an interprofessional organization for those interested in health care and want to learn about interdisciplinary issues regarding health care.
Dr. Lucero Delgado Martinez shared:
"Throughout his academic journey, Luis has exemplified the true spirit of service. His dedication to uplifting others has been evident through his involvement in various community outreach programs, including his role as the founder of Future Healthcare Heroes. Through this student organization, Luis has spearheaded numerous initiatives aimed at delivering healthcare to patients facing health disparities and addressing complex societal issues head-on. From organizing events focused on the inequities in healthcare to engaging in international service projects, Luis has shown a deep-seated desire to foster solidarity and empathy on a global scale.
In Luis Valdes, we see a shining example of the transformative power of education in action. His tireless efforts to serve others, advocate for social justice, and promote human dignity align closely with the values of our university’s mission. Through his actions, Luis inspires us all to follow suit, reminding us that each of us has the power to make a positive difference in the lives of those around us."
In the future, Luis sees himself as a successful surgeon, advocating for the special needs community in Eagle Pass, Texas. He would also like to set up a health institution in Eagle Pass, making it accessible for Mexican and U.S. citizens at the border. Luis wants to become a physician that goes on and beyond for his patients, to understand their needs and not treat them as just a case to solve.
Luis is an extraordinary individual whose unwavering commitment to service and advocacy has left an indelible mark on our community and beyond, a beacon of compassion, empathy, and integrity. Congratulations, Luis!