The Rob Benzon / Dan Ferbal Foundation (RBDFF) is proud to have awarded two scholarships through the annual PFLAG Scholarship Awards to two deserving LGBTQ students pursuing higher education.

The Rob Benzon Memorial Scholarship: Awarded to Alexis L.

Next fall Alexis plans to attend the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). As a mental health advocate and LGBTQ+ activist, Alexis hopes to collaborate with important on-campus organizations Active Minds and Complete Cognitive Care, who have large chapters at UCLA.

Active Minds is a nonprofit organization that offers counseling support and strives to end the stigma surrounding mental health struggles, while Complete Cognitive Care provides mental health resources to underserved communities at UCLA.

Alexis’ goal is to connect the low-income communities, the Latinx community, and the LGBTQ+ community to accessible mental health resources. Knowing these communities are more prone to suicide, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse, he wants to become properly educated and equipped to be the support these communities need.

Alexis aspires to receive a doctorate level education, become a psychologist, and make a difference working with these marginalized groups.

Grant awarded in March 2023

Daniel J. Ferbal Memorial Scholarship: Awarded to Diego P

Diego is a graduating senior from Montgomery High School in San Diego, California. He is the Montgomery High School GSA President, and the first generation of his family to attend college. He has been accepted to Yale University and plans on attending in the fall.

His academic and career aspirations include his continued support of his community. Diego’s leadership translates into his activism. As a queer, Latin activist, his knows his participation in GSA has been the inspiration to continue to develop his voice and further his goal to create safe LGBTQIA+ spaces and to champion the issues and talents of queer folks.

Diego stated in his grant application: “My goal is to continue to embrace and nurture the vibrant communal culture of queer spaces in my hometown, university, and worldwide–building safe spaces for LGBTQIA+ people to express their thoughts, opinions, and issues openly.”

Grant awarded in March 2023