Rosi recalls growing up a very shy girl who struggled with a hearing disability that affected her self-esteem and ability to connect with others. “Since I could not hear well, I felt like an outcast. I did not fit in a group of girls chatting with each other. Instead, I found comfort hiding in a teacher’s classroom helping her clean the boards, correct papers, and eating my lunch.”
Since then, Rosi has grown into a confident leader, an outspoken advocate for others, and a role model in her family and close-knit community.
Rosi found Girls Inc. to be a safe space where she could be herself and make friends, something she had always had a hard time with at school. Her mentors saw something in her that she didn’t see in herself — her leadership skills. At Girls Inc., Rosi found opportunities to help other girls grow and develop into their best selves.
“At Girls Inc., I gained the respect of younger girls, a feeling I had never experienced before. They assumed I had the courage to lead and turns out, I did.”
Thanks to college prep programming and guidance at Girls Inc., Rosi is the first person in her family to attend college. She is currently a freshman at UC Davis studying agricultural business.
Growing up in a primarily farming town, and seeing the exploitation of farm workers has ignited a passion in Rosi. One day she would like to own a farm where she grows organic produce, pays her workers fairly, provide healthcare to employees, and even offers scholarships for the children of employees.
“I’ve come a long way from being the shy, self-conscious girl who did everything she could to hide. I am determined to pay it forward to help those after me know they too can achieve their dreams.”