Patricio Molina
Stan L. McLelland Forty Acres Scholarship
Forty Acres Scholars Class of 2020
Monte Alto, TX
High School
Edcouch-Elsa High School

Growing up in South Texas, I learned what it meant to make the American Dream come true. As a kid, I was surrounded by people who immigrated from Mexico, came to the United States, and made something for their families. This was a massive inspiration for me, and I want to make a difference and give back to the communities in the Rio Grande Valley that helped shaped me into who I am. Something that has transcended being a hobby and has become a huge part of my identity is my interest in Mariachi music. After having been in my school district’s highly successful Mariachi program from 5th grade throughout high school, I could not possibly see myself discontinuing to play after high school. I have created some of the best and longest lasting relationships because of this music. The music has presented me with incredible opportunities, such as working for the UIL State Mariachi Festival and performing in front of 75,000+ people at the NRG Stadium during the Houston Rodeo. I am a big advocate for Mariachi Education and do not see that changing anytime soon. At UT Austin and through the Forty Acres Scholars Program, I have found ways to piece all of my varying interests together. I plan on attending law school with a potential career in educational policy making, and FASP has done an incredible job to help me achieve what I want.


Other Academic Interests
Violin performance; educational policy; biology

Extracurricular Activities
I am a member of the UT Chapter of LULAC and have performed with the UT Mariachi Ensemble and Lab Orchestra as a violinist. Outside of school, I am a professional mariachi, having performed across the state with various professional groups. I have performed at the Houston Rodeo and have accompanied singers from Mexico and Spain.

What drew you to the Forty Acres Scholars Program (FASP)?
FASP felt like much more than a scholarship program; it felt like a real community that cared about its scholars. UT is such a large campus, and one of my biggest fears about being on campus was not having a community that I could call home. Thanks to FASP, I never had that problem. I came to campus with a family that I knew I could count on.