Living in a town with few groups that empowered minority girls, Giselle wanted an environment where she would be encouraged to succeed. Giselle found refuge at the Hispanic Resource Center, where she participated in a leadership group. There, she began to grow, but still needed help building her confidence and finding her true voice.
After the resource center’s program ended, Giselle and a few other girls were approached about joining Girls Inc. and the opportunity to take part in the Girls Inc. Leadership Council. She was instantly hooked and turned in an application to participate the same day. She was accepted and for the first time, she felt empowered to speak her mind. The confidence buried inside her was unleashed. She took the lead on video projects, wrote scripts, and facilitated discussions about self-esteem. Her experiences at Girls Inc. showed her she had a voice, but that it was equally important to listen to what others have to say—lessons that have stayed with her ever since.
Today, Giselle is a Girls Inc. National Scholar who will be the first in her family to attend college. She is studying social work at Iona College and will travel to New Orleans as part of a service immersion program this January. After graduation, Giselle hopes to pursue her Master’s degree and possibly join the Peace Corps.
“I hope to be a helping hand to others because I know what it’s like to not have that helping hand. One way or another, I want to improve people’s lives.”
We hope you never forget that you can advocate for yourself and others, Giselle!
Read more about our National Scholars.