Upward Bound Alumni Spotlight: Jennifer Salazar-Sanchez

What dreams for your life and career do you have?

My dream has always been to attend medical school and eventually become a doctor, but for now, I will be taking a detour from that. The situation from the pandemic has opened my eyes to a lot of problems and disadvantages that are affecting certain populations around the world. As a result, I will be pursuing a Master's in Public Health and use that to better certain situations of people and communities who have faced challenges during these troubling times. 

What obstacles are in the way to achieving those dreams?

I believe that as a Latina and as a woman, those would be an obstacle to achieving those dreams. The reason is that many people wouldn't want to give a chance to a person of that background, but I believe that can change. 

What resources have you had access to that have helped you overcome those obstacles?

My university has given me several opportunities to succeed, from my professors being there to assist me, to all the faculty and staff who have been a listening ear. Other resources have been my family because they understand how hard it is to sometimes reach your goals.  

What role did the Upward Bound program play in your journey of education?

UB really changed my life! They assisted me in finding scholarships to college applications because for me that was the most difficult part during those times. There have been times that I reached out to them during my college experience and ask them questions about anything because I wasn't really sure who to ask! Ultimately, UB became family and I am truly grateful for all the help that they have given me!

What inspirational advice would I give to someone who is facing difficulty achieving his/her goals and dreams? 

I think that the greatest advice that I could give anyone would be to never give up! There have been times where I thought to myself if I would ever be able to pursue my dream, but despite the challenges and the roadblocks, I kept going. You should never let yourself down because you might regret it, but if you keep going, you will get to experience the most beautiful and wonderful things the world can offer you. If people feel like they might not be good for a particular career, don't be afraid of change, because that might be the best thing to ever happen to you! 

Jennifer Salazar-Sanchez
Published: May 1, 2022 12:00am