Valencia High School student Amanda Liu and educator William Truong are part of the 2023 Scholars cohort. The Bezos Scholars Program inspires and challenges young people and an educator they nominated for support to address issues they are passionate about in their communities.
According to the Bezos Scholars Program, the applicant pool is competitive. Students selected are one of twelve scholars representing nine states this year. Scholars are selected based on commitment to their education, demonstrated leadership abilities, willingness to embrace challenges, and the desire to create positive change in their communities.
When Amanda learned she was selected as a Bezos Scholar she shared, “I’m excited to develop ideas and goals to best advocate for my community and I look forward to connecting with the scholars and forming lifelong friendships!”
Amanda is a first-generation Chinese American and an actively involved student at Valencia High School who is passionate about women’s empowerment. She is the founder and leader of Empower by Hour, a nonprofit organization dedicated to tackling social issues through cultural narratives and storytelling campaigns.
In honor of Women’s History Month, Amanda led the #HighSchoolGirlBoss Campaign, impacting thousands of students globally through educational panels and gatherings on important issues. Beyond her advocacy, she is a nationally-ranked orator and Latin dance performer.
Amanda will be supported by her educator scholar William Truong, Assistant Principal at Valencia High School. The program begins with virtual community building and identifying Scholar’s sense of purpose before embarking on an all-expenses paid trip to the Aspen Ideas Festival, where students engage in leadership training, panel discussions, and exclusive conversations with many of the world’s most acclaimed global leaders. This experience sets the stage for the challenge ahead: launching sustainable community change projects to transform their communities.
The Bezos Scholars Program is a year-long leadership development program for rising high school seniors and an educator from their school. It begins with an opportunity to attend the Aspen Ideas Festival and continues through the following school year when Bezos Scholars return home, participate in virtual trainings, and launch sustainable community change projects which transform their schools and communities. For 18 years, Scholar teams have mobilized communities around a range of critical issues.
I am so happy that the Bezos Scholar committee recognized Amanda for being an amazing young woman! She’s gifted and is incredibly hard-working! I’m so proud of her.