College Student

My name is Amarilis Santiago and I am the first born in my family with three younger siblings. Both my parents, humble workers in agricultural fields, instilled in me the importance of setting lifelong goals to help keep me focused. Their hard work and dedication in achieving the American Dream has allowed me to dream higher. I intend to set an example for my siblings to follow my steps towards greater success. At the age of sixteen, I became a mother, which made me mature much faster than I ever intended, yet it has kept me highly motivated to succeed. For the future, I plan to focus my attention on my education and my son. My son Emiliano is my motivator and has allowed me to grow in my academics. Thanks to the continuous support of my parents, I will be the first in my family to graduate college. My career objective is to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. With my degree, I intend to stay in the Yakima Valley to collaborate with local non-profit agencies to enhance the health care experience for those who are unaware of many existing resources. In my community, health care professionals lack relationship-building skills to connect with and guide patients in living healthy lives. With rising costs and ineffective communication, many people lack coverage when they need it most. I have witnessed several cases where patients are unable to cover medical costs, forcing them to live with serious health issues, which drastically affects or changes their lifestyle. I will advocate for all who need guidance, support, and proper care. The Rising Farmworkers Dream Fund organization would allow me to carry on the values my parents and community have instilled in me, to improve the health and wellbeing of those in the Yakima Valley. With my degree, I will provide a means for my community to become aware of available medical benefits, which have been previously unaddressed. I am selflessly committed to improving the lives of those who have gone years without medical attention.

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