Fr. John Milton, CSV, would be proud. The first recipient of a scholarship created in his name by the Viatorian Community was awarded to a first generation college student, who plans to major in mechanical engineering at the University of Illinois.

Fr. Milton measuring centripetal force in an experiment he brought to the school, called “Can Pigs Fly?”

“I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to go to college,” says Ezequiel, who graduated in May from Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep. “The scholarship will help. I won’t be as stressed about the finances and can concentrate on my academics.”

While attending CRSM, Ezequiel spent his freshman year working one day a week at St. Mary of Lake Seminary, before spending his final three years at AbbVie, a pharmaceutical and research company, in its IT department.

Growing up, Ezequiel says he loved math and science, but when he reached CRSM, he added another component to his passion: problem solving.

“I just like solving problems and using formulas to figure out the answer,” Ezequiel says.

Fr. John Milton develops physics experiments with Ms. Kumkum Bonnerjee at Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep

His interests came together in AP physics, which Fr. Milton had developed with Ms. Kumkum Bonnerjee, physics teacher at CRSM. With Fr. Milton’s help, they developed the curriculum — and labs — to offer AP physics for the first time, in 2011. When the school moved to its new, state-or-the-art campus in 2018, Ms. Bonnerjee set up her new physics lab, with equipment and unique components for experiments that Fr. Milton had brought to the school.

After Fr. Milton died in January, Preston Kendall, President of the school, dedicated the physics lab in his name. Shortly after that, the Provincial Council of the Viatorians voted to create a scholarship in Fr. Milton’s memory, designed to recognize an outstanding student planning to pursue the study of science.