Where did you attend college?
Santa Clara University
What was your college experience like as a first-generation college student?
As a first-generation college student, transferring to a university while also working a full-time job was a challenging process. I didn't have anyone to guide me through the path I was taking and finding someone who could understand not only where I was headed, but also where I was coming from, was a task on its own. Once at Santa Clara, I was able to find counselors, professors, staff, and students who were willing to help and understood my journey. The Lead Scholars Program offered me support like no other. Through LEAD I was able to find my people and was introduced to many different opportunities that I otherwise would have not found on my own. With the support and guidance I found at Santa Clara, my experience as a first-generation college student became much more rewarding.
What message do you have to share with current first-generation college students?
As first-generation students, we did not grow up with the resources that non first-gen. students did. Our path is a much harder one, but that does not mean that it is impossible. There are many people out there that are willing to help, but you have to remember to ask! Leave your fear and humility behind and remember that you don't have to do everything on your own. Inform yourself on the resources that your school provides and take advantage of them. There are so many opportunities and so many doors waiting to be opened, all you gotta do is knock!