Senior Spotlight Series: Southeast, 2017 Goals & Dreams

In our Senior Spotlight Series, we follow YES Prep seniors as they set goals for their futures, apply for colleges, and make one of the biggest decisions of their lives. In each installment, you’ll meet seniors from one of our ten campuses with graduating classes. Below, you’ll meet seniors from our Southeast campus.

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SE-1Meet Bitia Alanis

Bitia is a student ambassador, a Latinx ambassador, a member of National Honors Society, a volunteer with a chiropractor, and a Sunday school teacher. Bitia’s family lost their home as a result of Harvey, and they are now living with one of Bitia’s former teachers. Because her parents don’t speak fluent English, Bitia has served as a translator as they work to recover from the storm and rebuild their house. Her dream school is Yale, where she wants to be pre-med. Eventually, she’d like to work for Doctors Without Borders and help others.

“I started at YES Prep Fifth Ward in 6th grade and Mr. Little was one of my teachers. He had so much energy and joy, and he listened to me. He taught me that YES is a family-oriented school. He still checks on me– even after I moved to Southeast.”

SE-8Meet Angela Barbosa

Angela plays varsity volleyball and basketball. She is also a student ambassador, a Latinx ambassador, a member of the National Honors Society and student council, and a Girl Scout. Angela dreams of being an ER doctor and has participated in summer opportunities such as the Sewanee Bridge Program in Biomedical Sciences, Camp Cardiac, the Free Enterprise Leadership Challenge, and more. She is a Posse semifinalist. Angela’s dream school is Sewanee, where she wants to be pre-med and to join Latinx groups on campus.

“If you [are Latinx and] go to a predominantly white institution, you might feel isolated. It’s important to find a group of people that share your culture, so it feels like a home away from home.”

OrlandoMeet Orlando Valdez

Orlando is a Latinx ambassador and a member of the Asian club. After the storm, Orlando organized a group of over 500 volunteers at the Pasadena shelter, earning recognition from the mayor and chief of police. Orlando wants to become a politician and hopes to study law or political science in college. His dream school is the University of San Francisco because it has a diverse campus.

“Ignorance can come from a lack of diversity. I value being somewhere that is diverse.”

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