Jessica Colorado 2018 Youth Leadership Award

2018 Youth Leadership Award Jessica Colorado.jpg

My name is Jessica Colorado. I currently live in Richmond, CA, but I’m originally from Mexico. Since I got to the United States my life has been really challenging. I have had to deal with so many obstacles that have hurt me emotionally.

For instance, dealing with my english teacher who did not believe in me, and didn’t really support me as her student. She used to tell my parents to send me to work at McDonald’s or any other type of job because she did not believe I was going to be able to graduate from High School since I couldn’t even speak a word of english. However, after facing so many obstacles, I was able to graduate from high school and even with more credits than required.

After graduating from high school, I knew it I was going to attended to college, however, I didn’t really know what to choose as major. So, I heard about <dev/mission> from my mom and I decided to join, in order to learn new things. When I first got to the program, I saw that big sign in the door that says “YOU BELONG HERE” as soon as I saw that, I felt safe, I felt that that program was going to help me with so many things in order to continue my education, I didn’t feel excluded from how I felt back in High School just a month before.

While I was in the program, I was able to learned many amazing and exciting technology skills such as, critical carrier skills, web development and hardware IT skills. After, couple of weeks I was able to built my first website from scratch using HTML, CSS and JavaScript. I was also exposed to so many tech companies where I was able to meet new people and network with professional engineers.

Being in that program was a little bit challenging for me since I was commuting from Richmond, CA everyday and doing other activities at City College of San Francisco; so after completing my other classes at CSSF I had to run to the program in order to get there on time. Leo Sosa was my instructor and Leo likes everyone to be on time!

After graduating from <dev/Mission>, I realized that I enjoy being exposed into tech field! So, I decided to pursue a Computer Science degree at the City College of San Francisco, and to my surprise <dev/Mission> provided me with a mentor (Vincent Woo) who has been helping me to get into the right path.

On Thursday September 27 of this year, I received an scholarship and an award from <dev/Mission> during their 1st Youth Benefit for the 2018 Youth Leadership Award. Half of the scholarship money I will use it to buy supplies and books for my next semester, and the other half I’ll save it for when I transfer to the university since I’m thinking to apply for UC Berkeley or San Francisco State (seeking to get a PhD).

I want to thank <dev/Mission> for all its support, for always helping and encouraging young adults to find new opportunities in order to have a better future for them and for their families. As a woman, Latina, immigrant and from a low-income family. I just feel so proud of myself for everything I have done so far and I think that without my parents and Leo Sosa’s support, I couldn’t have done all these incredible things.

Thanks, <dev/Mission> and Leo Sosa for always believing in me.

Jessica Colorado <dev/Mission> Alumna

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