Don and Audrey Bentley Scholarship Awarded to Lucero Escobar Jaramillo

Watauga High School student Lucero Escobar Jaramillo, daughter of Jorge Escobar and Sharon Jaramillo, was named the 2024 recipient of the Don and Audrey Bentley Scholarship.

This year’s award is $20,000. The scholarship is renewable for a total of four years, and the amount of the award can vary annually. This is the fifth year for the Bentley Scholarship, and with this year’s award and renewals of prior years, this fund will have awarded $264,000 in its first five years.

Lucero Escobar Jaramillo poses in an App State hoodie in front of an App State sign
Lucero Escobar Jaramillo

In addition to her academic achievements, Escobar Jaramillo has been a Pioneer Ambassador at Watauga High School as well as a member of the Performing Arts Honor Society. She participated in the Upward Bound program through Appalachian State University all four years of high school, which provided academic advising and college preparation.

She has also participated in community service during high school through the United Hands Club and the Watauga County Sheriff’s Department Cadets Program. In addition, she is a member of La Rosas y El Clavel Folkloric Dance Group, a traditional folkloric dance group, and was drum major and section leader in the marching band during her junior and senior years of high school.

Escobar Jaramillo plans to major in psychology at Appalachian State.

“My goal is to become a bilingual clinical teen psychologist, and I want to work in the school system. I want to be able to help teens and parents know and get informed about mental illnesses and how to see the signals of a mental illness,” she said.

The Don and Audrey Bentley Scholarship is administered by the North Carolina Community Foundation. The scholarship is awarded annually to students from Watauga High School and Watauga Innovation Academy, and focuses on academic achievement, leadership, good citizenship, effort, and demonstrated financial need. 

To learn more about the Bentley scholarship and others provided through NCCF, visit

About the Watauga County Community Foundation

The Watauga County Community Foundation is an affiliate of NCCF that has served the community for more than three decades. It is led by a local volunteer advisory board that helps build community assets through the creation of permanent endowments, makes grants and leverages leadership – all for the benefit of Watauga County. To learn more, visit