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University of Central Missouri
Administration 302
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660-543-4640
Fax: 660-543-4943


UCM Honored by Guadalupe Centers, Inc., with the Robert Reeds Business of the Year Award

Contact: Mike Greife
WARRENSBURG, MO (Sept. 19, 2016) – The University of Central Missouri was recognized by the Guadalupe Centers of Kansas City with the Robert Reeds Business of the Year Award at  the organization’s 2016 Blanco y Negro Awards Gala.

Robert Reeds Award at the Blanco y Negro Awards
UCM President Charles Ambrose, center, accompanied by Vici Hughes, left, and Monica Huffman, right, received the Robert Reeds Business of the Year Award on behalf of the University of Central Missouri. Cici Rojas, second from right, was mistress of ceremonies for the event.

UCM was one of five recipients of special awards presented Friday, Sept. 16, at the Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland in Kansas City’s Power and Light District.

UCM President Charles Ambrose, joined by Vici Hughes, UCM director of charter schools, and Monica Huffman, executive assistant to the university president and member of the Cesar Chavez Scholarship Committee, received the award on behalf of the university.

These awards, presented by the Gaudalupe Centers Board of Directors and executive staff, recognize outstanding individuals and institutions who have contributed to the growth and development of the Guadalupe Centers and the Kansas City Latino community.

UCM was recognized as one of the most valuable partners of the Kansas City Hispanic community through its longtime commitment to the quality of education provided to the community and the Guadalupe education system as sponsor of the Alta Vista Charter School. UCM’s partnership with Guadalupe began in 1999 with the university’s sponsorship of Alta Vista. The continued partnership has resulted in the growth of Alta Vista to include the middle school in 2009 and the elementary school in 2012.

UCM also joins the Hispanic community in presenting the Cesar Chavez Scholarship annually to a student of Hispanic descent. The first $10,000 scholarship was presented in 2004, with two scholarships offered each year beginning in 2007. In 2015, the scholarships were increased to $12,500 each, and in 2016, UCM announced that a third scholarship would be available to a graduate of Alta Vista Charter High School.

“This is a partnership that makes sense,” Ambrose said in receiving the award. “It reinforces our commitment to education for all, and it is among the most meaningful awards the university can receive. Your kids are our kids, and your students are our students.”

He added that the collaboration has been important for all involved, with UCM’s Hispanic student population increasing by 88 percent in the last five years.

“Without this collaborative spirit, the doors of opportunity would not be as open as they are today,” Ambrose said. “All of the Cesar Chavez Scholarship recipients enter UCM with a mission to make a better world. Our objective is to open that door to every student who wants to attend.”

Also recognized at the Blanco y Negro Gala were: