We know how difficult it can be to live and survive in Silicon Valley. As a community, we’ve experienced a lot of losses during this pandemic: jobs, loved ones, a sense of connection. We were forced to create classrooms at home with what we had, whether it was a seat at the kitchen table, bedroom, or corner in the garage. Parents became full-time teachers, doctors, and caretakers to their kids and sick family members.
College students scrambled to find ways home, as most universities shut down due to the pandemic. Students shifted towards online learning, in the midst of losing their jobs that supplemented tuition, housing, and grocery costs. They lost access to on-campus resources and support systems. Despite these hardships, many first-generation students found ways to power through. At the end of the day, resilience is in our blood! Being a fighter and a lover comes naturally to us. We fight to survive out of love for our family. We continue to work to be better than those before us and make our dreams and our families’ dreams come true.
As we continue our fight, we’d like to shine a light on a young KIPP Alum, currently attending UC Irvine majoring in Aerospace Engineering. He has the incredible opportunity of participating in The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers Conference, taking place this November in Orlando, Florida. This conference will give him access to a fountain of knowledge and networking opportunities with professionals and other Latinx people in aerospace and STEM. His only obstacle to making this dream a reality? Money. Attending a big conference like this is expensive. There are so many costs to consider: flights, hotels, professional attire. His family is a huge support system, but, unfortunately, they are not able to financially support his trip.
We are turning to you, our community, for support. Like many moms we know, his mom does the impossible for her children. It would be an honor to not only support her son but show her that they are not alone. If you are able to, please donate by scanning the Venmo code below and making your donation to Salvador Vazquez. Anything helps and your donation will open doors to so many opportunities we’ve been historically excluded from. Let’s work together to ensure that more of our Latinx students can participate in events like these!
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