The Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation® awards the Juan Luis Guerra Scholarship to music student Jesús Molina-Acosta

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    Jesús Molina-Acosta and Juan Luis Guerra
May 05, 2016 -- 8:29 am PDT

The Scholarship, Will Allow 19-Year-Old Colombian Pianist an Exceptional Opportunity to Work Toward a Four-Year Bachelor’s Degree from Berklee College of Music

MIAMI, FL (May 5, 2016) —The Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation® awarded the Juan Luis Guerra Scholarship to Jesús Molina-Acosta, a 19-year-old  pianist  from Colombia, today during a special presentation at Berklee College of Music in Boston. Molina-Acosta was one of six finalists chosen by the Latin GRAMMY Foundation's Scholarship Committee, which evaluated a highly competitive pool of applicants. Molina-Acosta was chosen by Guerra to receive the scholarship with a maximum value of $200,000, which will allow him to further his music education at the prestigious institution.

“The Latin GRAMMY Cultural foundation is honored to be able to help nurture the education of Jesús Molina-Acosta, a uniquely gifted and passionate pianist,” said Manolo Díaz, Vice President of the Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation. “Our ultimate goal is to provide economic support to exceptional Latin music students with financial needs, and our partnership with Juan Luis Guerra and Berklee College of Music is essential to our success in meeting that goal.”

“I want to congratulate the six finalists and especially the winner of the scholarship, Jesús Molina-Acosta. We applaud and admire his dedication, work, and talent. We look forward to continuing to fund scholarships that benefit Latin music students,” said Juan Luis Guerra.

"I can think of no better pairing to inspire the future leaders of the Latin music industry and beyond than the Juan Luis Guerra Scholarship Award, presented by the Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation," said Roger H. Brown, President of Berklee College of Music. "We are deeply appreciative of our partnership with the Foundation, which strengthens the college's ties to Latin culture and music, and for their generosity, which provides an opportunity for deserving students from Latin America to pursue their dreams at Berklee.”

Molina-Acosta is set to begin his studies in fall of 2016. He will be awarded a maximum of $50,000 in annual tuition assistance over four years from the Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation to finance his music education at Berklee College of Music. In order to qualify for continued annual assistance, Molina-Acosta must honor and maintain standards of excellence set forth by the Foundation and the music institution as well as maintain a GPA of 3.5, which will be assessed each year of his studies. The scholarship will allow Molina-Acosta to pursue an education at Berklee he otherwise could not afford.

The Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation was established by The Latin Recording Academy® to promote international awareness and appreciation of the significant contributions of Latin music and its makers to the world's culture, and to protect its rich musical legacy and heritage. The Latin GRAMMY Foundation's primary charitable focus is to provide scholarships to students of Latin music with financial needs, as well as grants to scholars and organizations worldwide for the research and preservation of the diverse Latin music genres. For additional information, please visit us at Latin GRAMMY Cultural Foundation  or on Twitter, Facebook  and Instagram.

Juan Luis Guerra is a musician, composer, producer, and songwriter from the Dominican Republic. Before he committed to music, Guerra studied philosophy and literature at the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo. He then studied guitar and music theory at El Conservatorio Nacional de Música in Santo Domingo, and Guerra subsequently decided to go to the United States to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston. He graduated from Berklee in 1982 with a degree in jazz composition. In 2009 Guerra was awarded an honorary doctorate from his alma mater. Guerra is one of the most internationally recognized Latin artists in recent decades. His popular style of merengue has garnered him considerable success around the world. He is also credited for popularizing bachata music on a global level and is often associated with the genre. An 18 time Latin GRAMMY® and three-time GRAMMY® winner, Guerra has recorded more than 15 albums and won numerous awards.

Berklee was founded on the revolutionary principle that the best way to prepare students for careers in music is through the study and practice of contemporary music. For 70 years, the college has evolved to reflect the current state of the music industry, leading the way with baccalaureate studies in performance, music business/management, songwriting, music therapy, film scoring, and more. In December 2015, the Berklee Board of Trustees voted to merge with The Boston Conservatory, creating the world’s most comprehensive and dynamic training ground for music, dance, theater, and related professions.With a focus on global learning, the Berklee campus in Valencia, Spain, offers graduate programs and study abroad opportunity, while Berklee Online serves distance learners worldwide with extension classes and degree-granting programs. The Berklee City Music Network provides after-school programming for underserved teens in 46 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. With a student body representing more than 100 countries, abundant  international undergraduate and graduate student populations (33 and 53 percent respectively), and alumni and faculty who have won more than 300 GRAMMY and Latin GRAMMY Awards, Berklee is the world's premier learning lab for the music of today—and tomorrow. Learn more at berklee.edu.

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Media Contacts:

Teresa Romo/The Latin Recording Academy/310.581.1281/teresa.romo@grammy.com

Contacto de Medios Juan Luis Guerra:

Róndine Alcalá/Rondene PR/310.462.1208/Rondinealcala@rondenepr.com