The Hispanic Heritage Month has a still-new history as a celebration in the U.S. It was established to celebrate and recognize the contributions of the Latino and Hispanic community.
Today we would like to recognize the hard work that parents put into their children’s education, today, thanks to those efforts we can see young Latinos like Jose Dominguez, and Jennifer Mendez, awarded by Baltimore’s Mayor, as Emerging Leaders. Hard work pays off, and we can see the hard work these two young Latinos are the example of that.
Jennifer graduated from Baltimore Polytechnic Institute high school with honors, she was a Centro SOL Summer Scholar in 2015 and was selected as a returning student during the school year 2015/2016, she was selected to be part of the first cohort of returning students in summer 2016. She has worked in the Tuberculosis Laboratory, at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, with the guidance of Dr. Petros Karakousis, associate professor of infectious disease at the JHU SOM. “At first I thought he (Dr. Karakousis) was to busy to work with me, but he has been a great mentor” told us Jennifer at one of our meetings during her second year of work. Jennifer is now attending college pursuing a pre-medicine degree, as she wants to become a doctor.
Jose graduated from Digital Harbor high school and is now attending college, his dream is to become a computer science engineer. He was a summer scholar at Centro SOL Summer Program for the first time in 2014. He was selected to be part of the Centro SOL extension program for summer scholars, when he had the opportunity to expand his research experience. He is part of the Salud al Dia team, lead by Dr. Lisa DeCamp, assistant professor of pediatrics at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “I am learning about statistics, I had no idea about that, and now I am learning a lot” told us Jose about his work with Dr. DeCamp. Jose’s avarage GPA is 3.8, he is also a community advocate and a leader for several community organizations and families.
But not everything is easy, they work really hard, long days and nights do not defy these young Latinos, who see themselves as dreamers. Both are trailblazers paving the way for many other youth coming, and growing in Baltimore. They work thanks to the vision of the professionals who believe in them, and believe in the meaning of their work for the future.
To mentors and supporters of our youth programs, thank you.
Visit the Hopkins Promise video to learn more about our program