Trinidad “Trini” Mendenhall is a soft-spoken, humble, philanthropic leader who believes that “to those whom much is given, much is expected.” She combines business savvy and a creative flair with a heart for strengthening Catholic charities and education, protecting women and children, supporting the Hispanic community and finding a cure for diseases that have taken the lives of people she loved.
In 2008, Mendenhall contributed $4.5 million to UST—at the time, the largest gift ever made by an individual donor—to establish the Mendenhall Achievement Center, located in Crooker Center. The Center’s professional support team provides essential services to UST students that foster personal growth, well-being and academic success. They include advising, mentoring, tutoring, career services, testing, counseling and support for first-generation students.
The Center’s flagship program, the Mendenhall Summer Institute, is a five-week summer program for select incoming freshmen. It helps students transition to college and prepares them for majors in the sciences and mathematics. Students also have the opportunity to earn scholarships to assist with tuition.
The Mendenhall Achievement Center this year celebrates 10 years of achievement, and, thanks to Trini Mendenhall, a Life Member of UST’s Board of Directors, the program is going strong.
“The Mendenhall Summer Institute program has contributed to hundreds of UST students and their collegiate and personal journey,” said Dr. Rebecca Dowden, director of the Institute. “Because of Mrs. Mendenhall’s generous heart and contributions to helping incoming freshmen, many students have learned valuable leadership skills, gained a strong sense of community and much-needed confidence as they begin their collegiate careers.”
Trini Mendenhall, who was honored in May with the Catholic Charities Legacy Award, is an invaluable part of our Celt community.