As a college graduate, I believe my most significant impact I have had so far was working as a Youth Program Assistant for Canal Alliance’s University Prep program during the COVID-19 pandemic. Growing up in the Canal district, I returned to the community to share my graduate application process. I gave students words of encouragement and hope, however, I also spoke about the complicated truth of being rejected and feelings of imposter syndrome. I am proud I was admitted into a prestigious Master’s program and hope to encourage and serve as a role model by pursuing higher education. I currently work for the University’s Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership as a graduate research assistant. I chose to work for this department because of its mission to close educational gaps through research in the surrounding and global K-16 system. I strongly believe that it is important that I share my knowledge, experience, support, and guidance to those who want to pursue a similar path as me.