Skip to main content

Current Scholars

Nicole Arrea


Class of: 2023
Hometown: San Jose, Costa Rica
School: College of Arts and Science
Major(s): Economics
Minors(s): Human and Organizational Development

From volunteering with her family to working towards achieving systematic changes in the Costa Rican political system, Nicole has always been passionate about understanding the hurdles of poverty and inequality. She started volunteering at the age of 10; however, it wasn’t until her father introduced her to the community of Tirrases that she could truly comprehend the importance and impact of service. As Nicole grew older and became curious about the cause-and-effect relations that led to these circumstances, she realized that many were a byproduct of the systems that governed the Costa Rican community. Ever since, she assumed a role in working towards changing these. Through her campaign, Compartamos la Mesa, Nicole drafted and proposed a bill to Costa Rica’s National Congress to further incentivize food donation by decreasing the region’s liability policies. As a college student, Nicole has used the tools Vanderbilt University and the Ingram Scholars Program have given her to engage with much more complex systems. She is collaborating with Accenture’s Future Talent Team to increase employment opportunities for diverse populations by further expanding professional apprenticeship programs. Nicole firmly believes that through small improvements at a systematic level, we can change the lives of the millions that need it the most.