Professional boxer Jose Ramirez after winning Mike Reed at the Fight for Water 7 at the Save Mart Center on Nov. 11, 2017. (Collegian File Photo)

Professional boxer announces scholarship

Former Bulldog Jose Ramirez has established a scholarship that will be awarded an Avenal High School graduate planning to attend Fresno State.

“We have reached over $50K in my scholarship foundation,” Ramirez stated via Twitter recently. “Looks like will be giving the first Jose Ramirez scholarship to a student from my hometown this fall.”

Ramirez, who is from Avenal, attended Fresno State, then left to pursue boxing. He competed in the 2012 Olympics as a boxer.

“We obviously are very honored that he chose to invest his funding and [is] supporting students from Avenal High School,” said Fresno State President Dr. Joseph Castro. “I’m just absolutely thrilled that he did this and we love him so much.”

Castro said Ramirez approached Fresno State in 2015 about awarding scholarships to students. Since then, Ramirez’s scholarship foundation has reached $50,000.

“I anticipate that it’s going to continue to grow over time,” Castro said. He said he thinks Ramirez’s scholarship foundation will help students in pursuing higher education at Fresno State.

“I think the scholarship is going to help students from Avenal who have big dreams like he does to be leaders,” Castro said.

Castro said he hopes the scholarships will inspire students to partake in actions that mirror what Ramirez has done.

“They’ll be $1,000 scholarships for students from Avenal High School to come to Fresno State,” Castro said. “To get a high-quality education that hopefully leads them to a career in the Central Valley and gives them a chance to give back to other young people in Avenal, the same way that Jose has done.”

Castro added, “He is a leader in the boxing world, and he’s one who has a big heart. He wants to give back to young people.”

Jose Ramirez did not respond to questions for this story by deadline.