Four Cochise scholars named All-Arizona Academic Team


Cochise College scholars were recognized for achieving Arizona’s highest honor and named to the 2019 All-Arizona Academic Team. Guillermo Gamez Cordova, Yassine Fouchal, Paulette Iniguez and Joshua Novinger will receive tuition waivers to complete their bachelor’s degrees at one of the state’s public universities. All-Arizona Team members are selected for their demonstration of academic excellence and intellectual rigor, leadership, and service, and for their commitment to extending their education beyond the classroom to benefit society. Each student is working toward an associate degree and maintains a GPA of 3.5 or higher (4.0 scale).

The four Cochise students were among 78 community college students from across the state to be awarded scholarships from the Arizona Board of Regents. The scholarships are part of the All-Arizona Academic Team program, which aims to point the best and brightest community college students toward enrollment at Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona.

Students nominated are evaluated for academic performance and service to the college and the community. The nominations are reviewed first by business, civic, education and government leaders, then judged a second time by representatives of various federal agencies and education associations. They are ranked and placed accordingly on first, second and third academic teams.

Fouchal and Iniguez placed on the All-Arizona First Team, Gamez Cordova was placed on the All-Arizona Second Team. Novinger was named to the All-Arizona Third Team. In addition to tuition waivers, each of the Cochise All-Arizona scholars received a cash scholarship of $1000 for First Team, $750 for Second Team and $500 for Third Team from the Cochise College Foundation.

Cochise College All-Arizona scholars:

Guillermo Gamez Cordova of Douglas is majoring in business management and plans to earn a bachelor’s degree in applied science with an emphasis in regional commerce at the University of Arizona. “Ultimately after graduation, my career goal is to become an entrepreneur and help grow our family business,” Gamez Cordova said. “Part of my future plans include helping the local businesses and starting a marketing agency.”

Yassine Fouchal of Sierra Vista aspires to become an astronaut. He is majoring in engineering and plans to earn a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Arizona. “My mother told me finding what you like to do is the key to a happy life,” Fouchal said. “As a young child, I would stand on the back porch with my father counting the stars and dreaming of someday reaching them as an astronaut.”

Paulette Iniguez of Cananea, Sonora is majoring in engineering and plans to earn a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University in biomedical engineering with a focus in biomaterials. “Upon receiving my undergraduate degree, I wish to further advance my education by obtaining a master’s degree in tissue engineering, then a doctoral degree in medicine,” Iniguez said.  “My passion towards this area of study has grown throughout the years. I want to focus on the research of assembling functional constructs that restore, maintain, or improve damaged tissues and whole organs.” Her goal is to work in a field that focuses on medical applications where the body uses its systems, sometimes with the help of foreign biological material, to recreate cells and rebuild tissues and organs. “I want to utilize my doctorate in medicine to become a surgeon and actively be a part of the application of medical devices, not just a member of the team behind the creation of the organ,” Iniguez added.

Joshua Novinger of Sierra Vista is majoring in English and plans to earn a bachelor’s in English at Arizona State University. His career goal is to become a community college instructor and eventually pursue a Doctorate of English. “Having the gift of gab and a natural drive to help others, I discovered a new joy working with students,” Novinger said. “Over the years, I’ve taught various subjects in different levels, and I’ve found that I most appreciate the interactions I’ve had with college-level students.”

Congratulations, to these distinguished Cochise College students who earned scholarships to state universities with their selection to the 2019 All-Arizona Academic Team.

Photo caption:

From the left: President J.D. Rottweiler, Executive Dean of Academics Alan Biel, Yassine Fouchal, Paulette Iniguez, Joshua Novinger, Guillermo Gamez Cordova and Executive Vice President/Provost Verlyn Fick attending the 2019 All-Arizona Academic Scholarship luncheon.