2014-2015 College Track Annual Report - Page 18

go to college. The school where I volunteered had one counselor assigned to support 3,000 students. If a student were interested in going to college, he or she would have to advocate heavily for themselves, navigating academic requirements, college and financial aid applications, and much more. Inspired by College Track, I worked to build similar supports for my students, creating a tutoring program and recruiting college peers to volunteer. During this time, I realized I had a natural strength in building relationships with students, namely in being their advocate and validating their struggle, but also in pushing them to be the agents of their own education. I soon realized I wanted to continue on this path to become a teacher. My passion was seeded after these experiences, which led me to dedicate my life to fighting educational inequality and improving the trajectory of our under-resourced communities, first, as an Educational Page 18 College Track Annual Report 2015 Opportunity Program counselor at UC Berkeley and later as a Teach for America bilingual elementary school teacher. As a College Track alumna, I recognize I have a following of people whom I am responsible for and that I am not contributing to a better future for anyone, including myself, if I do not return to the roots that nurtured me and help others to take root and grow. Today, I’m proud and humbled to be that role model for my brother, my cousins, my students and their families, as well as to have the ability and knowledge to take on responsibilities that benefit my family’s future. I am an agent of change, which means I am in service of my students, our families, and our community. I know each day is a chance to succeed, bringing us closer to the transformative change we collectively seek.