Yessica Rodriguez, Alumni Representative
Yessica Rodriguez joined our Board of Directors in October 2021. Yessica is a Dream Team alumna from the class of 2016, and is currently working towards her Masters in Biomedical Science at UNC. As she was once in our program, she serves as our Alumni Representative to provide insight, support, and resources from the perspective of someone who has been through the Dream Team Program. We love having Yessica on our Board and back with our program to share her experience and support more students like her. Plus, it’s great to be in touch with her as she accomplishes even more in academia and professionally!
What is your favorite part of serving on the Board of Directors?
My favorite part of serving on the Board of Directors for The Greeley Dream Team is being able to see the growth of students from the same schools I attended a few years ago. I love being able to see the dreams of students come to fruition as they go into the workforce, get into their higher educational programs, and thrive in their adult years!
What influenced you to serve on the Board for the Dream Team?
I have always wanted to stay involved with educational programs once I graduated high school. I always admired the support of the Dream Team program while I was going through my undergraduate program, whether it meant inviting us alumni to the annual summer picnic, reaching out for school updates, or helping me find my way back to Greeley and become a UNC Bear after a series of loops when it came to deciding my university. Once I started in my Masters Program, I was delighted to stay connected with Dream Team and even more excited when Elizabeth reached out for this opportunity!
What does it mean to you (personally and/or professionally) to serve on the Board?
Personally, serving on the Board is a way to give back to the same programs that helped me get to where I am today. If it wasn’t for Dream Team recruiting me back in eighth grade, I do not believe my successes and accomplishments would be what they ended up being without them. Professionally, I have been able to make several connections with other members of the Board and within the community that have been able to show me other opportunities within the city. I have been able to meet amazing community members, but I have also met incredible students that have asked about higher education and I have been able to let them know about being advocates for their community and themselves. I am very fortunate to be able to come back to the same place that helped me years ago and now be able to help out like-minded students that I once was.
What advice would you give a Dream Team student who one day wants to work in your field?
Some advice I would give to a Dream Team student who wants to work in my field one day is to be your biggest advocate. I have learned that when there are days that you are tired and feel you are through, you cannot quit. It’s a difficult field, and it pushes you, but when things seem worse is when you mustn’t quit. Your strive and dedication will take you to unlimited successes if you constantly believe in and motivate yourself.
What did you study in college?
During my undergraduate degree, I studied Biological Sciences with an emphasis in Pre-health and had minors in Sociology and Chemistry at the University of Northern Colorado. I am about to finish my Masters in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Northern Colorado as well.
What inspired you to work in your field?
I am currently pursuing to go to medical school and one day work as a medical professional. I have had this dream since I was in second grade and was always inspired by my own medical journey growing up. I was born three and half months premature, developing childhood asthma, bronchitis, and pneumonia. I spent several years around different types of medical professionals and grew fond of how much they cared for their patients and advocated for all types of individuals. Them, combined with my medical history, pushed me to pursue a field in the medical industry and to one day be a voice and advocate for people in the same position I was once in.
What is your favorite thing to do in your free time?
My favorite thing to do in my free time is to do any type of arts and crafts. I love going to craft stores and buying different types of projects to do from scratch or paint to give as gifts. Doing arts and crafts has been a great stress reliever during my graduate program, and I hope to be able to do more after graduation!
Yessica has also been featured as an Alumni Spotlight! Read more about her here!