How will your individual background, experiences, and personal identity influence your educational pursuits and your contributions to the campus community at UF?
I credit the development of my personal values to my parents and culture. My parents were raised in Puerto Rico, where they became medical doctors. While my father came from a college educated family, my mother did not. Overcoming deep economic challenges, my grandparents provided my mother with a superior education that prepared her to complete medical school and specialize in pediatric oncology. Her experience in particular led me to appreciate the value of education, compassion, and the sharing of one’s gifts and talents to improve society. I have adopted my parents’ dedication to serve others as a core and essential rule in my life. My Hispanic culture also emphasizes this principle, and it has strengthened my belief that to live a satisfying life I should strive to help others. In my school community, this value is exemplified through my extensive involvement with the Key Club, a service organization. As a club officer, I have been responsible for organizing community service projects. This has given me great personal satisfaction because I been able to reach out to the community and also help my peers serve others. Last year, I organized a service project where our members brought food and supplies to the migrant families and learned about their difficult, precarious lives. This project increased our sensitivity to these families and helped us appreciate Hispanic culture. Professionally, it is my goal to assist others in developing ways to use technology to improve their lives. I developed a passion for technology at an early age when I received my first computer. This interest quickly grew into a desire to help others understand technology and solve technological problems, something I often do for teachers and students at school. My proficiency with computers has helped me rise to executive positions in various school organizations and has led me to receive the Caltech Signature and the University of Rochester’s Xerox Awards. Being adept with computers has reinforced my desire to pursue a college degree in engineering and technology. I will bring to the university my desire to develop my technology skills further and my openness to learning new ideas. At UF, I can study engineering while contributing my leadership skills to the campus community. I am eager to be involved in student organizations that are actively engaged in the campus and surrounding communities. As a Hispanic, I also hope to be part of a multicultural environment that fosters appreciation of diversity and values my cultural heritage, which along with my parents led me to become the compassionate man and eager learner I am today.