OLLU hosting Encuentro High School Theology Institute for seventh year

OLLU is hosting the Encuentro High School Youth Theology Institute (HSYTI) this week for the seventh and final year. Funded through a grant by the Lilly Endowment, Inc., the program includes 15 OLLU students who will mentor 21 high school students – rising juniors – through Wednesday.

The high school students will live in Centennial until they depart on June 14. They represent different schools, such as Incarnate Word High School, Providence Catholic School, Central Catholic High School, Holy Cross High School and other public schools.  The Encuentro mentors and students will participate in faith-based presentations led by different speakers. 

Two OLLU student mentors are products of the Encuentro program: Amanda Salazar attended in 2017, and Marissa Escamilla attended in 2019.

“I decided to be a mentor because I was part of the Encuentro program in high school,” said Salazar (BA 2023), who will pursue an OLLU master’s in Communication Sciences and Disorders in the fall. “My experience in high school was so transformative. I would never change a thing about the choices I made, the people I met. I want to be able to provide that experience to the next generation.” 

Said Escamilla, an OLLU sophomore in Early Childhood Education: “I feel all the growth I experienced as a freshman was kickstarted by the Encuentro program. I learned how to engage with people my age and older. I’m excited to be a mentor.”