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Cindy Dao Scholarship

“The ability to learn is a gift so keep learning.” is the motto Ms. Cindy Dao often reminds her three sons. She is the mother of a former Encore head coach and swimmer, Victor Nguyen. At the age of six, she and her family emigrated from Vietnam. Coming from a family of educators, she followed her parents’ footsteps of teaching and advocating education for all student learning. Getting a good education has been embedded into the way of life since Cindy and her five siblings learned how to talk. After graduating from San Jose State 1993, she had managed several daycare and tutoring centers for over 20 years. Now that all her children are grown-up, she is returning to school to get her Masters in Education.

The scholarship is named after her because she is a true advocate for all student learning. She believes everyone has the ability to learn and do their best when given an opportunity, encouragement, and support. Whether it is one student at a time or a classroom full of students, she values their potential to change the world and would advocate for the opportunities they need to be all they could be.

All of the athletes on the Encore swim team has access to a great education, a great team, and a great community. Coach Victor has created this scholarship, to award student athletes that have made the most out of the opportunities they have been blessed with. The award is designated to those who are achieving academic excellence, shown commitment to the team, and given back to the community that raised them.

The scholarship funds and application reviews are managed by Victor Nguyen and Cindy Dao for undergraduate college students and awarded at the end of swimming season during the banquet every year. Evaluation is based on numerous factors including academic honors and recognition, current GPA, community service, leadership experience, and any other relevant accomplishments.


  • Encore swimmer in the 15-18 age group for four years
  • Registered full-time student at an accredited junior college, college, or university

Submission Requirements

  • Scholarship Application by July 1st
  • 500-1,000 word Essay, “Why are you a good candidate to receive this award?”
  • High School Transcript

If you are in need of help in completing any of the requirements, feel free to contact Victor Nguyen.

- Victor Nguyen and Cindy Dao

Congrats to Cruz Wong & Ryan Schader - our 2018 Scholarship Recipients 

Congratulations to Cruz Wong (middle left) and Ryan Schader (middle right)! The Cindy Dao scholarship was founded based on the merits of athletics, community service, and academics. You two young men have gone above and beyond to excel in these parts of your lives and I know you will continue to grow and do big things. I was fortunate enough to coach you two and watch you surpass me as swimmers. I hope this scholarship supports you as you strive for academic excellence. Go Encore!

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