Former UHV soccer player gives back to alma mater
When Raj Singh joined the UHV men’s soccer team as a freshman in 2011, he received a soccer scholarship and an additional scholarship from a local company due to his academic performance. That act of kindness from the community inspired him to champion future student-athletes.
Singh of Sarasota, Fla,. recently collaborated with his business partner and mentor Emilio Torres to donate $25,000 to UHV and create the REST Scholarship. The scholarship will provide $5,000 in scholarships to UHV men’s and women’s soccer players during the next five years.
“From the first moment when I came to UHV and started playing as a freshman on the team, I learned so much about the value of relationships and being part of a team and a community,” Singh said. “Now that I have graduated and have a successful career, I’m keen to give back to the community that made such an impact on me.”
The funds will primarily be used to support graduate and international students on the soccer teams. UHV Athletics will determine how the funds are awarded.
“We are so excited about this meaningful commitment that Raj has helped establish for our soccer student-athletes,” said Amber Countis, UHV vice president for advancement and external relations. “He has been where they are and knows firsthand about the time and commitment it requires to successfully balance school, athletics and every other obligation for today’s UHV students. I am honored that he chose to give back in this way and look forward to seeing the impact that this scholarship will have over the years. I hope this generosity will inspire others to find their own way to support and advance the Jaguar family. Raj and all of our donors are helping to transform lives and make a difference now and for years to come.”
Singh, who played as a defender in the center-back position for the UHV men’s soccer team from 2011 to 2013, was named a team captain and played a pivotal role during the team’s early years, said Adrian Rigby, UHV’s head soccer coach and assistant athletic director. The team had such a positive impact on Singh, that his family is following his example. Today, Singh’s little brother is playing for the Jaguars in the same position that he used to play.
“Raj was a great player and leader for our team. He’s been an active alum and tremendously supportive alumnus who continues to follow our success at UHV since he graduated,” Rigby said. “I am proud of the time he spent here, and I am even more proud to see the person he has become today. This scholarship will help us recruit and support other players to the UHV Soccer team.”
Singh graduated in 2016 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting. Today, he is the general manager of Lamborghini Sarasota in Sarasota, Fla. The dealership stands as the sole exotic car dealer in a group of 68 dealerships that serve the area, he said. Now, as he looks back on his time at UHV and the relationships he formed with his teammates and fellow students, he is proud to be able to give back.
“When former students give back to a program, it shows that they believe in the program and how it has helped them,” Singh said. “I want new students to see my support and know that I believe in how UHV can impact their lives the way it made a difference for me. I want other international students to know that no matter their background, they can be successful here if they are willing to work hard.”
The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 50 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.