We recently spoke with a stellar Give Back alum named Ignacio “Nacho” Rios.

After finishing up at Joliet Central High School in Illinois, Ignacio moved on to Lewis University and recently graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science (though Lewis University recently redubbed the program as “Health and Human Performance”).

Afterward, he was accepted into the Post-Secondary Biomedical Program at Lewis and will be returning for three semesters to complete the curriculum. This program will fulfill his prerequisites for a physician assistant program. He’s aiming to apply for a physician program by 2023 which is his ultimate career goal.

After graduating this year, Ignacio has taken more time to reflect on how much the Give Something Back scholarship and organization have impacted his life and that of his family.

“Without this scholarship, my opportunities and experiences would have been much harder to achieve and obtain. I have been very fortunate with this scholarship and remind myself every day to take full advantage of what has been awarded to me. I truly cannot imagine my life without the people and the experiences this scholarship has allowed me to have. I never thought I would be the role model in my family. The first to graduate from a university,” he said.

Ignacio explained that he plans to ‘give back’ by speaking and mentoring through the scholarship, expressing how fortunate he has been to have amazing and motivated mentees so far. 

His advice for other Give Back scholars?

“Take full advantage of the resources, connections, and of course the experiences that come with this scholarship. Do not hold back asking for help or questions. The family that is Give Back is here for us.”


Thank you for sharing your journey with us, Ignacio. We look forward to seeing your hard work impact many young lives with dreams just like your own!