Kevin Ramirez, a 2016 graduate of Bishop Mora Salesian High School, was recently awarded a prestigious Fulbright grant to conduct research on indigenous people and culture in El Salvador.

As part of the Fulbright grant and complementing his studies in pursuing a Ph.D. in Latin American and Caribbean History at NYU, Ramirez will spend a year in El Salvador researching indigenous communities that have largely been erased from history in that country.

“The research is to shed a light on indigenous people in the country and criticize the Salvadoran state for systematically trying to erase them from their history,” Ramirez said.

Ramirez’s mother is from El Salvador and his father is from Guatemala. But it was his Spanish teachers at Bishop Mora Salesian, he said, who encouraged him to take his interest in Central American history and culture further.

He hopes to eventually turn his research and Ph.D. into becoming a college professor teaching Latin American history to a new generation seeking to tap into that background.

Ramirez also credits his Catholic education at Bishop Mora Salesian for helping him overcome obstacles in life.

“A lot of what Catholicism teaches us to do is to follow a path, and eventually everything will work out. And I’ve always done that,” he said. “I’m very grateful for the opportunity to pursue my passion of writing this history and connecting back to the country where my mom comes from.”