Today's spotlight is Paulina Hernandez-Trejo! Paulina is a senior at UT currently studying English. During her time at UT, Paulina has served as a Resident Assistant, been a member of the RA executive Board, and been involved with the Hispanic Business Association. Next year, Paulina will be joining the Jacksonville Corps!
Paulina attributes her desire to join TFA to her parent and her past. "I was born in El Paso, TX, but I lived in Juarez, Mexico from when I was born until I was almost fourteen years old. Every day, my papi (I use a lot of Spanish vernacular in my vocabulary), brothers, and I would be in line at the border at 6:30 am, all so that I could receive a better education in the U.S. All I remember back then was how much I would complain. To this day it haunts me because my parents sacrificed their time and resources for us to attend a private school in the U.S. (we could not attend a public school due to our status). Like many of my neighbors, my parents could have simply just enrolled us in our neighborhood’s school for free, but they knew what the value of education meant for us. So this is why every day I think of what I am doing, and how I am making their sacrifice worth it."
"Many children in this nation aren’t so fortunate to have parents that see the value in education the way I was privileged with. I feel that because I was given this opportunity, that I need to spread it. "
After her time at TFA, Paulina wants to work as part of the publishing industry, where she hopes to push initiatives that focus on diversity. "I want to work in the Publishing industry–preferable in trade publishing under Children’s Literature, Middle Grade, or Young Adult. I am a huge advocate for literacy for everyone, but mainly for children and adolescents. Most of all, I am an advocate for diverse literature where people of different race, gender, ethnicity, etc are represented."
For students who are considering the program, Paulina says this. "Think of the teacher that most influenced you–whether they encouraged you to go to college career path, or even helped you personally. Think about being that person for someone else. And if you did not have a teacher like that (as how I did), then think about how you could be that person for someone. "
We're so excited to see the impact that Paulina will have in the classroom! The last deadline for seniors is approaching quickly - March 2nd! If you have any questions regarding the application process or about TFA in general, please don't hesitate to reach out to Jorge Galan, our recruitment director, at Jorge.Galan@teachforamerica.org!