Elizabeth Gonzalez, 20 Latinitas Under 20

Name: Elizabeth Gonzalez
College: Bowdoin College (Brunswick, Maine)
Age: 19
Hometown: El Paso, Texas

Volunteer Experience:
She has volunteered extensively throughout her life with the following groups: Animal Rescue League, Corpus Christi Church Can Food Drive, La Posada Home Inc. Shelter for Battered Woman, Ascarate Park Environmental clean up, DaVita Kat Walk and Latinitas Magazine Writer & Mentor.

Honors:
She recently won 3rd place in the Future Business Leaders of America for her community service project. In addition, Elizabeth has participated in the Science Bowl and in UIL competitions in current events and vocabulary. Elizabeth’s biggest accomplishment was being accepted into the The Princeton Journalism Program. This is a highly competitive summer writing camp, and Elizabeth was selected out of national competition.

What challenges has she overcome?:
“One of the biggest obstacles I have overcome is myself. To explain that more clearly it is a more personal obstacle rather than a physical one. When I grew out of my shell and realized that the only one stopping myself was me, I was able to face my fears and achieve aspects I wouldn’t have believed I was able to do so before. I gained a new confidence, really saw my goals more clearly and set out to accomplish them. I became more sociable and outgoing. I participated in school activities seeing that there really was nothing to be afraid of. I guess getting out of my comfort zone has been my greatest obstacle.”

What makes her a leader?
Elizabeth Elizabeth is a smart and diligent student highly committed to furthering her abilities through education. Elizabeth has been challenging herself by taking advanced college courses throughout her high school career as a student at the EPCC Valle Verde Early College High School. She is not afraid to tackle new challenges. She was granted admission into the rigorous early college program at the El Paso Community College and has gained 54 hours of college credit. She has also been on the Dean’s list. She is committed to continually developing her skills and always learning.

Elizabeth is the definition of a role model. She inspires her peers to try their best when put in front of an obstacle. As a member of the Latinitas Leadership Institute, she played a key role in organizing a youth-led girl empowerment conference for middle school girls in our program. She also mentored younger girls enrolled in our after-school programs, summer camps and leadership institute by guiding small team activities and serving on leadership panels. As an intern and reporter for our digital magazine she has written informative articles for publication on topics such as culture, education and art. Throughout her involvement with our group, she has demonstrated a commitment to contributing her talents to help further our mission and to help motivate other Latinitas. Because of her dedication to volunteering, she was chosen for the city-wide Mayor’s Top 100 Teens group. She recently won 3rd place in the Future Business Leaders of America for her community service project. Furthermore, she has volunteered extensively throughout her life with groups such as Latinitas, Animal Rescue League, Corpus Christi Church Can Food Drive, Corpus Christi Saints Festival, La Posada Shelter for Battered Woman and community clean-ups.

What extra-curricular activities is she involved in?

She has taken on leadership roles within her school and is willing to take on new challenges. She is deeply passionate about giving back to her community and bringing awareness to community issues. She writes for her school newspaper and aspires to be a journalist. Her hobbies include photography, writing and watching independent movies. Elizabeth is involved in numerous extra-curricular activities on her campus and in the community. Her involvement includes serving as the Secretary of Student Council, the President of the Environmental Club, President of the National English Honor Society, a youth mentor for Club Latinitas, a member of the Teen Leadership Institute and a member of the National Honor Society.

How is she a good example and positive role model to other girls?
Her proudest achievement has been her positive influence on the education of her younger cousins. Her educational achievements in being accepted into the Valle Verde Early College High School and her plans to continue her college education have served as inspiration for her younger family members. “This is something really unplanned, so that definitely motivates me to strive and hope to show them to make better decisions, and hope to do so for younger girls as well,” shares Elizabeth.

Nominated by: Alicia Rascon

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