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Holmes Scholar Program


Holmes Scholars Program

The Holmes Scholars Program at CSUSB, supported by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, provides a supportive environment to doctoral students traditionally underserved in higher education. The goal of the program is to provide mentorship, peer support, and professional development opportunities to Scholars, who will serve as outstanding candidates for future faculty and leadership positions. If you would like more information, please contact Dr. Audrey Baca Lopez by email at or Dr. Karen Escalante at Review a current list of our Ed.D. Program and Faculty Fellows for potential mentors. Applications will be accepted starting July 1 through August 14, 2022. 

Holmes Scholar Opportunities 
  • Connect with peers in the Ed.D. Doctoral Program
  • Engagement with faculty and/or Ed.D. Program Fellows in regular mentoring meetings
  • Membership in a national network of peers with access to dedicated online social networks
  • Mentoring opportunities by Holmes Scholar alumni currently in academia and other leadership positions
  • Opportunities to present their research at the AACTE Annual Meeting
  • Dedicated mentoring programs at the AACTE Annual Meeting
  • A job fair at the AACTE Annual Meeting and access to position announcements through the year
  • Annual Holmes Scholars Summer Policy Institute in Washington, DC, including participation in AACTE’s Day on the Hill and networking events associated with the AACTE State Leaders Institute
  • Attend the AACTE Holmes Scholars® Dissertation Retreat and Research Symposium
  • Leadership and professional development opportunities at the school level, campus level, and national level, such as participation in conference presentations and policy/advocacy training
Holmes Scholar Expectations
  • Two-to three-year commitment to the CSUSB AACTE Holmes Scholars® program
  • Attendance to CSUSB AACTE Holmes Scholars® program meetings & sponsored events
  • Engagement in collaborative research with annual refereed publication and presentation deliverables
  • Excellent academic standing in your program
  • Collaboration with CSUSB faculty, community partners, and national educational partners
  • Participation in/facilitation of community-engaged projects
  • Engagement in selected specific professional organizations both locally and nationally
  • Annual attendance at the AACTE National Conference
  • Participation in at least one AACTE Summer Policy Institute
  • Peer-mentoring of a first-year Holmes Scholar (in years two and three)

Meet our Holmes Scholars

Angelica Agudo
Angelica Agudo, Cohort 15

Angelica Agudo is a first-year doctoral student in the Doctorate in Educational Leadership program at CSUSB. She has been selected as one of two Holmes Scholars of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education on its inception year at CSUSB. Angelica has been immersed in the workforce from the young age of sixteen. Post 19 years of her high school graduation, she made the decision to return to school to earn an Associate of Arts Degree and has not parted from a school campus since. 

Angelica has dedicated almost 17 years to the Rialto Unified School District and the community it serves. In addition to her professional work, Angelica has served as a Lab Instructor for the Information and Decision Sciences department and was a Graduate Assistant for Dr. He and Dr. Pierce at the Jack H. Brown College of Business and Public Administration at CSUSB during her Masters program. Besides her academics, she was currently selected to serve on the 2022 Board of Directors of the Santos Manuel Student Union. Her passion for servant leadership has allowed her to previously hold positions on the ASI Board of Directors as the Graduate Students Representative, and VP of Finance Pro-Tem. In addition, she served as Co-chair of the VETI Committee and a member of the SSI Steering Committee, TGSS, and the Dean’s Advisory Council. She made a positive impact as an MBA Student Ambassador, a Trendsetter for the Office of Academic Equity and was a previous Global Ambassador for the Center for Global Management.

Angelica earned her Associate of Arts Degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences from Chaffey College in 2015, her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology in June 2018 from CSUSB, just one week after her son received his degree from DePaul University in Chicago. In 2021 she earned an MBA with a focus on Management, and an MBA with focus in Accounting from JHBC at CSUSB. She is pursuing a Doctorate in Educational Leadership and may again share the commencement stage with her daughter this time upon completion. She considers herself a lifetime learner and a voice for others. Her continued involvement outside of her professional and  academic demands include service on community boards, and most important to her, as a mentor to others in pursuit of access to higher education. She is a full time first generation student, full-time professional, and proud single mother of two productive members of society. Her passion focuses on empowering others and being an advocate for all students by helping, guiding and becoming a resource on and off-campuses.

Angelica plans to focus on a topic that she is not only passionate about but also has first-hand experience with, Access to Four-Year Colleges for First-Generation Students of Color Raised in Single Parent Homes. As a single working parent, immersed in the workforce with the determination to earn a higher education she lives by her quote, “My degrees may define my success, but my children remain my greatest accomplishments”. This motivates her to continue her service to others, continue as an advocate for students of color, and guide those in need to undiscovered opportunities to beat the odds. 

Angelica finds herself standing on unfamiliar ground, living a less than traditional planned life, yet she faces every day seeking the opportunity to make a better tomorrow for her children, the community she serves and any and all she crosses paths with.


Rangel Zarate, Cohort 14
Rangel Zarate, Cohort 14

Rangel Velez Zarate is a doctoral student at California State University, San Bernardino studying Educational Leadership. He has been selected for the inaugural year of the Holmes Scholar Program at  CSUSB. His research is focused on developing a community of care in higher education incorporating both academic and mental health support for Filipino American college students who have experienced or have been affected by racially-targeted violence in a COVID-era.

Zarate is a two-time recipient of the Educational Doctoral Grant at CSUSB and has worked as a graduate research assistant for Dr. Karen Escalante focused on advocating for antiracist and equitable teaching strategies for pre-service teacher education. Much of Zarate’s work is informed by his identification as a biracial Filipino and Mexican student in the Inland Empire and his experiences of  identity formation as part of an ethnically marginalized group.

“As a child, I always felt split between two cultures, living in a liminal space of Asian and Latino identity. Eventually, I grew up knowing only half of my culture as a Chicano. In my doctoral career, I’m so excited to not only be able to explore the intersections of Filipino identity now as an adult, but also continue to champion for and listen to other students who identify as Asian or Pacific Islanders who have their own intricate stories to tell especially in these urgent and turbulent times.” 

As an educational leader, Zarate hopes to advance AAPI advocacy for college students and build on his transformational work that validates these students’ experiences and amplifies their voices in higher education. He is also a published poet, fiction writer and photographer, Godzilla enthusiast and loves to spend his days with Infinity and Stryker, his dogs and Rodan, his turtle.