Bridge to the Future

  • current-scholars-2018

Fall 2018

Diane Melisa Ajiatas

Headshot of Diane Melisa Ajiatas, Student

CSUN Major: Interested in Majoring in Public Health or Nursing

Hope to pursue a career in: Health Care

Personal background: I was born in Canoga Park and raised by a single parent. My family is from Guatemala.

Personal interests / hobbies: I like to play basketball and played in my high school team. I love going on hikes in the mornings, it’s good way for me connect with nature. I enjoy coloring picture books with bright colors. I enjoy reading historical non-fiction books on my free time. Also, I love watching different types of genres of movies, for example, horror, awkward comedy, full action drama, suspense and romantic.

What makes me unique: Some things that make me unique is that I’m the only child. I have an attitude that likes to motivate myself into having a pep talk in the mirror. Also, my goal is travel most of the world or most famous countries like Europe, Japan, India and etc.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: The kind of difference I’d hope to make in the world is to spread awareness about the topics of health. In our everyday lives, we are so caught up in things to do and work, we often forget to ourselves first. Health is not often talked about in main stream media or the news. I would like to encourage people to start noticing what’s being put in their bodies, how it affects their mood/ health and the environment.


Jose Cheves-Polanco

Headshot of Jose Cheves-Polanco, Student

CSUN Major:  Business Administration

Hope to pursue a career in:  Sales Management. I'd like to travel and conduct business in other countries as well, so I'd like to learn a third language. 

Personal background: I was born in San Salvador, El Salvador on June 5th, 2000. My

parents immigrated to the U.S. in hopes of a better future for me (eventually my two younger siblings would join our family). I am a first-generation college student and will be the will be the first in my family to graduate from a university.  

Personal interests / hobbies: I like to listen to most genres of music with the exception of country & dubstep. Mainly Hip-Hop/Rap & all genres of Rock. I enjoy visiting amusement parks such as Six Flags, going, Go-Karting at MB2 in Sylmar, and playing video games (I love competition and can’t be beat.). I love to cook and make new dishes with my mom. I enjoy helping her out during Christmas.  

What makes me unique: I'd say my life experiences have helped make me a unique individual. I wouldn't consider myself an introvert nor an extrovert. I'd definitely consider myself right in between both. My life experiences have definitely shaped who I am. Learning, adapting, and overcoming certain obstacles whilst accomplishing milestones have assisted me in becoming a better person. 

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: Honestly, impacting the world seems like a million miles away to me... so I'd like to rephrase the question to, "what kind of difference do you hope to make in your community?" I want to start with the youth. Those who will take care of us when WE grow old. This year, when I turned 18 I told myself that I wanted to become a program worker for Beyond the Bell: Middle School Unit. I wanted to start doing something that I'd love doing, which would be coaching sports and becoming a mentor. With the help of my former Middle School coach and my references I landed the job and I look forward to it.

Vanessa Contreras

CSUN Major: Criminology

Hope to pursue a career in: Detective/ Criminal Profiling

Personal background: My parents are both from Jalisco Mexico and came to America in order to have a better life. I was born in California and the first in my family to attended college. We are a small family of four.

Personal interests / hobbies: Some of my hobbies consist of yoga, reading, painting, and baking.

What makes me unique: Something that make me unique are I am extremely optimistic and caring.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: The difference I hope to make in the world is to instill more kindness.

Gabriel Joseph Cummings

CSUN Major: Mechanical Engineering

Hope to pursue a career in: Robotics, as I have found that from building robots in my engineering class in high school and other activities, that I have a desire to build and work with my hands, and to attempt to understand how things work and what the applications for it could be.

Personal background: My parents told me I was born in Verdugo Hills hospital, I am an only child, and was lucky to be at all as my mother was medically determined not to be able to have children. The first 5 years of my life were a blur I can’t recall anything from, from there I remember living in an apartment in Glendale, from there we moved to a Condo in Canoga Park when I was about 6. I attended Limerick elementary school, and from there to Lawrence middle school, and finally to Canoga Park High School, where I worked to graduate with a 3.85 GPA, and be captain of the swim team, before I got the B2F Scholarship. My mother camefrom Boston, Massachusetts and has a Bachelor of science in printing and two minors from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. My father is from Carmel Valley and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and his teaching credential from Cal State LA.

Personal interests / hobbies: From an early age I had a love of Video Games, that came from watching my parents play on the Sega Genesis and the Original Xbox, which grew into a sizeable aspect of myself today. My parents gave me a love of movies/videos, which led to my love of reading fictional Novels. My father taught me how to Swim, and found I was a natural in the pool as I loved feeling weightless. My mother, in an attempt to broaden myhobbies, taught me card games which I grew to enjoy whenever they came up. I love Classic Rock after listening to all the bands my parents enjoyed from their generation, and finally they gave me my love of Games such as Dungeons and Dragons.

What makes me unique: I am extremely kind and understanding, a Big Brother to others as I am an only child, I am colorblind, both physically and mentally/ethically. I possess leadership qualities but also listens and respects other’s opinions.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope to improve the living situations and lively hoods of our communities, by building new machines that help improve the quality of life for all those who are unfortunate and less fortunate than myself, who deserve a fair chance to rise up and succeed.

Angela Escobar

Headshot of Angela Escobar, Student

CSUN Major: I’m currently Exploratory, but a major I’m interested in is liberal studies, interdisciplinary studies.

Hope to pursue a career in: I currently don’t know what career I wish to pursue.

Personal background: I was born in Tarzana, California during the night of September 30, 2000. I was born to two undocumented parents, who will be my motivation for the future. For the first 5 years of my life, my family and I lived in Canoga Park until we moved during my kindergarten year to Lancaster after my mom gave birth to my sister. We lived acasual life over in Lancaster where I made friends with the neighborhood kids who I still have contact with until this day. However, everything would soon fall apart during my third year there. We ended up losing our house and were forced to move, so we ended up moving back to Canoga Park and lived with my grandma in her two-bedroom apartment. Fast forward to the year 2012 and my mom gave birth to her third and final child who happens to be my brother. We finally got back up on ourfeet and moved out of my grandma’s apartment and up until this daynothing much has changed from then besides that everyone is getting older.

Personal interests / hobbies: Some personal interests of mine are listening to music, reading comics, and traveling. I also like to play video games, but I’m not that good at them.

What makes me unique: Some unique traits that I have is that I‘m very open-minded to everything as well as being persistent.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope that I’d be able to allow people to witness that they are not alone in their fights for what they believe in and that I’m able to give them hope to continue fighting.

Audrey Gracia

Headshot of Audrey Gracia, Student

CSUN Major: Sociology

Hope to pursue a career in: Social Work

Personal background: My name is Audrey Gracia. I was born in Indonesia, Jakarta on October 7th 1999. I’m the only child in the family, and my mother was a single parent. I migrated to United States in 2013, with the support of my mother and step-father.

Personal interests / hobbies: I love going on adventures and finding new places, and seeing the beauty of it. I like to go biking with my friends, and creating new memories.

What are some things about you that make you unique: Some unique things about me is that I could speak four languages, I have two pet turtles.

What kind of difference do you hope to make in the world: Throughout the years that I was alone, I never could picture what my future would look like, I was hopeless. I want people to believe that it is possible for anyone to be whoever they want to be. that no matter where you came from, you could achieve your goals if you put your hard work and dedication into it. I want people to have hope.

Victoria Gutierrez-Gonzalez

Victoria Gutierrez-Gonzalez

CSUN Major: Communication disorders

Hope to pursue a career in: Speech psychology

Personal background: My mother came to California at the age of 16. She didn't attend school (even in Mexico) because she went straight into looking for a job to support herself and her family. She didn't attend college which puts more pressure on me as a child because I would be the first in my family to attend college. I have been working at a restaurant since I was 16, to help assist my mother with the extra expenses around the house. My father passed away in 2013, so it is just the two of us. I was born in Reseda grow up in Canoga Park.

Personal interests / hobbies: I love listening to music and going hiking. I enjoy long walks.

What makes me unique: I was born with Clinodactyly; which is my two pinkies are curved and when I turn my hands around I make a shape, which is a heart.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I want to help kids in the future and by that I would have to finish with my career to do something right for the kids.

Tiffany Haghighi

Tiffany Haghighi

CSUN: Mechanical Engineering

Hope to pursue a career in: Aerospace engineering (working for an Aerospace company)

Personal background: I was born and raised in Canoga Park along with my older brother and mother. In high school I was a part of Many extracurricular activities and I was such as, being captain of my school academic decathlon team, president of an after-school community service club Keystone, President of the junior class council, and a member of my senior class prom committee, I have a High school Involvement Partnership with Northrop Grumman, and President of the junior class council. High school is where I developed a passion to give back to my community.

Personal interests / hobbies: Hobbies: Community service, hanging out with friends; Interests: Alt/rock music, internet culture.

What makes me unique: I am very committed to anything I sign up for because I know there is a bigger picture. I like to befriend people because it builds a community.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope that I can make a positive change in my community, more specifically to help more students become aware of their mental health habits and help them to find or provide resources on how to improve in areas they are struggling either academically or mentally.

Karina Jimenez

Headshot of Karina Jimenez, Student

CSUN Major: Anthropology

Hope to pursue a career in: With a degree in anthropology I hope to acquire a career in environmental sustainability.

Personal background: I was born in California and spent most of my childhood in Canoga Park and a small fraction of my life in a town in Jalisco, Mexico. I come from an immigrant family in which they have strong values and traditions that shaped me to be the person I am today.

Personal interests / hobbies: I enjoy traveling and being outdoors, especially, if they are beaches or forests.

What makes me unique: A unique thing about me is that I have completed the LA Marathon five times, through this experience I have met many people that have helped me become very social today.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope to take part in creating a new project in protecting the environment and keeping the Earth’s natural resources sustainable for the increasing human population.

Rebecca (Bec) Kane

Headshot of Rebecca (Bec) Kane, Student

CSUN Major: I’m an art major going into graphic arts and digital media.

Hope to pursue a career in: Digital art. I’m not quite sure exactly what I want to do yet, but I want to help other people with their projects while also working on my own projects.

Personal background: I was born here in California. My family says that I’m Irish and French.

Personal interests / hobbies: I would consider my alternative fashion choice a hobby because I incorporate it into my lifestyle. I also enjoy drawing, doing makeup looks, and making music.

What makes me unique: I make characters and develop their storylines with other people. I also write and produce my own music. I’ve written over eleven songs.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I want my art to be recognizable and enjoyable. If a piece of my art is posted somewhere in the world and someone can see that art, recognize it and have an improved mood because of it, then my job is done.

Jonathan Lopez

Jonathan Lopez

CSUN Major: Mechanical Engineering

Hope to pursue a career in:  I haven’t decided

Personal background: I was born in America however my mother is from El Salvador and my father is from Guatemala. I have one brother and one sister. My parents got a divorce when I was young so I am currently living with a single mother.

Personal interests / hobbies: I love playing video games during my free time. Whenever I hang-out with friends I like playing basketball with them and working out in the gym.

What makes me unique: Ever since I was young I always help those around me whether it is about school or if it is something personal. So, when I found out that Bridge to the Future is all about community service I was instantly interested about the program. Also, I am a very hard worker if I put my mind into it. During my senior year I had applied to over 15 scholarships and won a total of $4,500.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: To convince more people to do more community service and show how important it is to be involved in making a difference.

Michelle Lopez

Headshot of Michelle Lopez, Student

CSUN Major: Early Childhood Development

Hope to pursue a career in: The career that I hope to purse would be an education or any career that would work with children. I just have a passion for children because it’s bizarre to think that these children will one day change the world for the best.

Personal background: I am the second oldest out of three children. I was born in Northridge and raised in Canoga Park.  I am a first generation of Mexican-Americans in my family. Both of my parents emigrated from Guadalajara, Mexico to pursue the American dream. I am part of the LGBTQ+community and an activist as a bisexual woman myself, I want to help those that are struggling with finding their identities and advocate for the full acceptance of LGBTQ+ people in society.

Personal interests / hobbies: One of the special interests of mine is photography. I love the whole concept of telling a story with only a photograph to show that you’re capturing a beautiful moment in your life and you could relive that same moment when you look at the photograph.  Another special interest of mine is Arts & Crafts. I love how creative I become when I’m making something and the idea of picking out color makers, washi tape, and glitter, excites me so much. In addition, I love listening to music. I could listen to music for hours and I wouldn’t get annoyed by it.My favorite genre of music would be Latin pop. Lastly, another interest of mine would be dancing. If I have an opportunity to dance in any way possible, I take advantage of it. Especially, when dancing to Latin pop.    

What makes me unique: What makes me unique would be that I am not afraid to show my true self. 

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: The kind of difference I hope I can make in the world would be just helping the youth in any way possible. If they are struggling in their academic or personal life I would gladly lend a helping hand. The reason why I choose to help the youth is that without them there isn’t a future.

Vanessa Martinez-Joya

Headshot of Vanessa Martinez-Joya, Student

CSUN Major: Sociology

Hope to pursue a career in: Social Work

Personal background: I was born in the city of Northridge, California into a Mexican-oriented family. My parents are immigrants from Mexico and met in California. Now we have a model nuclear family. I've been a part of small communities throughout my life, so far – in small-campus schools and a small city. Being a part of the lower-middle class also contributes to my character, as well as the strong Mexican/religious values my parents imbedded into my mindset. But from the community and my peers in school, I've learned to be flexible and to socialize.   

Personal interests / hobbies: My personal interests consist of watching horror/action films, listening to music and spending time with friends and family. Just like most people my age.

What makes me unique: Something that makes me unique is that I am tall. It's not special, but for some reason people are always shocked by my stature.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope that in the future, I will have the opportunity to increase the number of homeless shelters in California and resources to help the less fortunate. Maybe one day I can extend this project in other states.

Keilah Matthews

Keilah Matthews

CSUN Major: I'm interested in Recreation and Tourism Management as well as Biology.

Hope to pursue a career in: I'm still unsure of which career I want to go into, but I am interested in the veterinarian career path and a career as an event planner.

Personal background: I am from theSouthern side of Los Angeles and moved to the San Fernando Valley my Senior year of High School. I have a twin brother and a younger brother who is going into his Junior year. My parents divorced when I was young so I was raised by a single mother. She has always pushed me to be my best and does all she can to support me and my brothers.

Personal interests / hobbies: ​I like all sorts of music really, but my two favorites are kpop and alternative rock. I enjoy swimming and volleyball, but just for fun. I love animals so much that I raised my own turkeys. I'm a very crafty person so I often make cool little crafts like keychains here and there. I also enjoy learning about culture, particularly the Asian ones. I eventually want to go to Japan and become fluent in Japanese.

What makes me unique: I am from the Cherokee Tribe. When I laugh I usually laugh myself to tears and have hosted conferences. But, I think the factthat I have raised two turkeys tops it all.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope to help people see the hope in future generations and our power. People often look at youth as powerless, but youth can be the voices of great things. At the same time, I want to influence youth to remain respectful of authority without giving up their own power. Older people have wisdom that should not be discredited.

Sandra Munoz

Sandra Munoz

CSUN Major: Psychology

Hope to pursue a career in: Child or Youth Therapy

Personal background: I was born in Woodland Hills. I’ve lived in Canoga Park my whole life. My mother, father, and step-father are all immigrants from Mexico. I grew up living with my mother and visiting my father on a regular weekly schedule. I am the eldest sibling of six siblings. My oldest sibling is 15 and my youngest sibling is 3 months. I have a lot of people looking up to me and the first in my family to have graduated high school and to be attending a university.

Personal interests / hobbies: I enjoy reading books, typically psychology-based books involving its history or studies that have been conducted. I have an interest in watching videos about Yellowstone Wolves, and other animal channels on Youtube. I enjoy playing games that require critical thinking. 

What makes me unique: I am extremely self-aware. This always helps me stay on track with my life. Acknowledging my emotions allows me to express myself, and stops me from repressing them, which may cause other areas of my life to be affected.  

What kind of difference do you hope to make in the world: My goal is to make a difference for the homeless community. I also want to do reach out to individuals who may have mental health issues and need support, whether it be in finding jobs or institutions that provide temporary housing while they get back on their feet.

Monique Mwangangi

Monique Mwangangi

CSUN Major: Psychology

Hope to pursue a career in: Social Psychology

Personal background: I was born and raised in Woodland Hills, California. My parents and relatives are from Nairobi, Kenya. Kenya is a nice place to visit especially for safari’s and great area to seek the culture lifestyle. Growing up I’ve always been in the local area, went to small campus’s schools.

Personal interests / hobbies: My personal hobby that I often enjoy is working out, listening to music and hanging out with friends and family. Majority of the time I often like to watch Netflix. I cook for my family twice a week and I actually enjoy spending my time cooking and being creative as much as I can be.

What makes me unique: One thing that I can say that is very unique about me is I was born hard of hearing on my left side and I’ve faced numerous obstacles in school constantly going back and forth with teachers telling me to get hearing aids. My disability with this issue isn’t as severe as they would think. I never just went by what they wanted me to do, I still made it out in most situations and learned to cope with it. I’m also very outgoing and extremely sociable!

What kind of difference do you hope to make in the world: I just hope to have open arms to work with an organization to help any individual in needs and make the best of it for the community.

Maribel Orozco

Headshot of Maribel Orozco, Student

CSUN Major: Spanish

Hope to pursue a career in: Spanish Interpretation/Translation

Personal background: I was born at the West Hills Hospital located in West Hills, California on July 28, 2000. I live with my oldest and youngest brother which makes me the middle only girl child and my two parents. We are your typical Mexican Latino family, with thousands of family members on both sides. But all my life my immediate family and I have managed to keep an inseparable bond. The five of us have faced many hardships, but the best part is that we conquer them together.

Personal interests / hobbies: One of the hobbies I love to practice on my free time is the art of photography. I enjoy going out to my garden to capture pictures of flowers or anything that catches my eye. Another thing I love to do is cook for my family; it helps me connect with them more by sharing my home cooked dishes.

What makes me unique: Something that makes me really stand out is my creativity. I absolutely love to share my imagination in any type of form, it can be in pictures, projects or even a simple conversation. I like to go beyond expectation and pursue a unique personality.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: The difference I hope to make in the world is to become a very well-known helping hand. Ever since I was little, I have translated English into Spanish to help my mother understand what she needed to know. I hope later in life I can do the same to anybody that has trouble speaking or understanding the English and Spanish Language.

Cedric Ramos

Headshot of Cedric Ramos, Student

CSUN Major: Electrical Engineering

Hope to pursue a career in: I hope to one day become an Electrical Communications Engineer

Personal background: I grew up in the Philippines where my mom raised me. My family here in the United States worked so hard to make ends meet to bring my mom and I here to the United States.

Personal interests / hobbies:  I am a bookworm and I love watching TV shows and movies. I am also a musician and a gamer. In my free time I usually binge-watch movies and TV shows but at other times I either play the guitar or the piano. I also play League of Legends or Dragon Nest with my friends

What makes me unique: I always find a time to rest and relax even if I have a lot of things to do.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope to make electrical systems and phone/computers more affordable for the students and people in need, so that almost every student will have access to the internet whenever they need it for like homework or projects.

Jose Salcedo

Headshot of Jose Salcedo, Student

CSUN Major: I am majoring in computer engineering.

Hope to pursue a career in: I hope to pursue a career in gaming development because I have always enjoyed gaming as a kid and grew interested in the inner workings and the positive effects it has for many people.

Personal background: I was born in California, but both of my parents were born in Mexico. I have three older brothers and a younger brother.

Personal interests / hobbies: I love to play volleyball, video games, and hang out with friends or family whenever I can. I am a dog person. I also recently learned guitar, which has become my favorite hobby.

What are some things about you that make you unique: I am able to multitask and keep myself organized to help avoid procrastinating. I am a hard worker who likes to keep busy and work through adversity.

What kind of difference do you hope to make in the world: I hope to make a difference by helping the environment and being more involved in the community. Even though I am one person, I believe we can change the world by doing something small each and every day.

Alexis Salmeron

Headshot of Alexis Salmeron, Student

CSUN Major: I am interested in business, and engineering.

Hope to pursue a career in: I hope to pursue a career as a well-known businessman and successfully selling my own brand to the world. I also, would be interested in becoming a sound engineer or music producer.

Personal background: I was born on January 7th 2000 at the Northridge hospital. My parents are both Salvadoran immigrants that came here with their parents for a better life. My father came from a small town in El Salvador called, Sunza. My Mother was born in a town called, Usulutan. I am the first born in my family and I’m a first-generation college student. I have four younger sisters. My parents never got to graduate from college because my mom was pregnant with me at a young age.

Personal interests / hobbies: Something I really enjoy doing is practicing and learning new music on my guitar. After teaching myself for a couple months, I had picked up on other musical instruments, and found myself in love with each and every unique sound, and style of play. In addition to music, I like to be active and hike, or play sports.

What makes me unique: I am an optimistic person. I will always have negative and/or pessimistic thoughts, but unlike many peers I talk to, I continue to look at the bright side of things regardless of the situation. Furthermore, I use my optimism to help my peers see the brighter side as well, so they don't make any rash decisions when clouded with bad thoughts. In addition to being optimistic, I am also a forgiving person and always try to drop any grudges. Even though these are some of the things that make me different, the one thing that impacts my life the most about myself is my persistence. Being persistent has opened numerous doors for me and is something that people always tell me to never change about myself.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope to promote diversity and free thinking. I want the world to see how different, how weird I am and how it can beneficial. Being able to promote difference means I will promote understanding. I see many children and people in my age group who are too ignorant to try and understand people. It has been a norm to judge a book by its cover for too long, and I hope to see a future where there aren’t “cool” kids or “losers” because I’ve seen that when we see above that we all have a sense of understanding and that understanding can bring us together and create peace. So, I hope in my efforts I promote peace.

Antonio Saquic

Headshot of Antonio Saquic, Student

CSUN Major: Civil Engineering

Hope to pursue a career in: The career that I am interested in is Architecture because I like to build things and design them, and hopefully one day be able to design an important building for the community that will benefit everyone. One day I hope to be able to build my own house and be proud of the work that I will do in the future.

Personal background: I was born April 4, 1999 in Guatemala, Quetzaltenango in the County of San Felipe Xejuyup. My family was born in Guatemala as well but now they reside in Maryland in the United States. I grew up with my mother and three siblings. I am the second sibling of my family. I was raised in a little community where most of the people spoke a dialect called Kitche, and a little Spanish. Later on, my mom came to the United States, my siblings and I stayed with my aunt, my mother’s sisters. We grew up with them and every time when it was time to pick up the crops we help them harvest without any payment.

Personal interests / hobbies: I am interested in music, soccer, technology, computer, and especially mathematics and always trying to get better at each thing. I like to listen music when I run and to concentrate. I play soccer when I want to have fun and I like to watch European soccer too.

What makes me unique: I am always curious about how technology works and how to take that technology to another level. I like math problems can be challenging or hard, and because my career will be related to it and one day I hope to build something amazing.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I like to volunteer in the community and I have been volunteering after school in a charity center, and I also helped students in Algebra 1 as a peer tutor. I want to help students go to college. I know the struggle that the people on my community are having so I want to help high school students to do their best to attend to school. That way the more students from the community will advance in their education, will graduate, and go to college each year. I want to be a good example to younger generations of students and one day see them graduate from college and pass on their knowledge to the following generations.

Jannie Varela-Rodriguez

Jannie Varela-Rodriguez

CSUN Major: Kinesiology

Hope to pursue a career in: Athletic Training/ Sports medicine physician

Personal background: I am the second oldest from a family of four. I was born in the city of Van Nuys on anice autumn day in September. I lived in Van Nuys for about two years. Two yearslater, in 2002, my family decided to move to Canoga Park, where I grew up. Growingup in a Latino family has impacted me in several ways, my family’s unity was thefoundation for my growth; their sacrifices are what sparks my motivation to succeed. Iam very grateful of who they helped me become, and I am very proud of my heritage.

Personal interests / hobbies: Some of my hobbies include photography, art and sports. I enjoy the creative freedom and the family I create among my teammates. Another thing I enjoy is the occasional cooking, the time I spend with the ones I love, and being in nature.

What makes me unique: I believe that there are a lot of things that make me unique, although I don’t believethat they can be tied to one word or thing. There are several things that make meunique, from the way I think, my experiences, to the way I carry myself, are all differentfor everyone. I guess what makes me unique is my experience of the world and how Ichose to react to it.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: I hope to make a big difference in the world, and to empower other students and minorities to achieve more. One of the changes I want to make in the world is how the Latin-American community perceives themselves. I believe that in order for our future generations to thrive, they must be surrounded by positivity, opportunities, and by role models. I want other Hispanics to know that they are capable of accomplishing more than what they think. I want to empower others and lead them away from the negative labels of society. We hold the power to change their perspectives. We can guide other students to do better, to believe in themselves and most of all to achieve more. I am very grateful to my family for planting in me the drive to work for my success and to want to change how the world perceives us, They have helped me become who I am and have made me appreciate where I come from.

Jocelyn Mallely-Vasquez

Headshot of Jocelyn Mallely-Vasquez, Student

CSUN Major: Kinesiology

Hope to pursue a career in: Athletic Training

Personal Background: Born in Burbank. My parents migrated to the U.S. from El Salvador. I'm the fifth child out of six. First generation going to college 

Personal Interests: I enjoy playing sports (especially volleyball and soccer). I also love dancing to Latin music and love going on adventures.

What makes me unique: I love helping others that are need of help even if I know them or don't. I am not afraid to take any risks and just love trying new things.

What kind of difference do I hope to make in the world: If I could make a difference in the world it would be to spread love and happiness because you may not know what type of day people are having, so just make someone's day.