Sonoma State student receives prestigious CSU award for her academic and personal accomplishments

September 23, 2020
Therese Azevedo

Rohnert Park, CA — Growing up in a small, rural central California town, Sonoma State University student Therese Azevedo has always defied expectations. While at SSU, the first-generation senior statistics major is helping others do the same, volunteering to mentor middle-grade girls on behalf of STEM programs and conducting research on math anxiety.

In recognition of her resolve along the path to college success, Azevedo is one of 23 students to receive a prestigious Trustees’ Award for Outstanding Achievement for 2020, the highest student recognition given by the California State University.

“Therese personifies what is best about Sonoma State Students - hard-working, dedicated, and brilliant,” said President Judy K. Sakaki. “That she is interested in pursuing an advanced degree in STEM is a testament to her ongoing curiosity and to the commitment of her SSU faculty.” 

As a multiracial student in STEM, Azevedo has prevailed over many stereotypes of what (and who) she should (or could) be. Navigating many cultural and institutional boundaries has informed her passion for data analysis. Azecedo actively supports student engagement as a Learning Community Mentor to statistics students and her research into math anxiety focuses specifically on female and underrepresented college students.

“Being selected as one of the recipients for the 2020 CSU Trustees’ Award for Outstanding Achievement is an incredible honor,” said Azevedo. “This recognition has increased my momentum to remain dedicated to my academic studies and research with the intention of giving back to my communities every step of the way.” 

Azevedo plans to pursue her Ph.D. in statistics with the ultimate goal of becoming a professor, while continuing her exploration of data driven research, increasing inclusivity, and sharing her passion for education.

“I am beyond grateful for all of the wisdom, guidance, and authenticity that I have received throughout my undergraduate journey because through empowerment I developed the strength to make my dreams become a reality," said Azevedo. "I strive to continue cultivating these impactful and meaningful experiences that have occurred in my life to help and encourage others with their own life adventures.”

Azevedo was be recognized for her achievement in a virtual meeting on Sept. 22 and will be awarded $6,000 as a Stauffer Foundation Scholar. For more information on the 2020 Trustees’ Award for Outstanding Achievement, visit the CSU.

ABOUT US: With a student population of 9,200, Sonoma State is a regionally serving public university committed to educational access and excellence. Guided by our core values and driven by a commitment to the liberal arts and sciences, Sonoma State delivers high-quality education through innovative programs that leverage the economic, cultural and natural resources of the North Bay. See more news from SSU at

Media Contact

Julia Gonzalez