Johanny currently attends Rhode Island College and is majoring in Psychology with a minor in Behavioral Neuroscience. She chose this major because she, “became fascinated by the idea that there was so much to learn about ourselves, how we think, interact, and can heal others.”
Because you support College Visions students, Johanny got to college, discovered her passion, and became a McNair Scholar! Your financial investment in College Visions helps Johanny achieve her goals, and that creates a more equitable future for us all!
Please take a moment to read her interview below and realized the difference your support makes!
Where are you from, what college/university do you attend, what is your major and why did you choose it?
I’m from the Dominican Republic, but was born and raised in Providence, RI. I attend Rhode Island College and am majoring in Psychology with a minor is Behavioral Neuroscience. I chose my major after deciding that I didn’t want to go into medicine anymore. I became fascinated by the idea that there was so much to learn about ourselves, how we think, interact, and can heal others and I wanted to focus on that throughout my college career.
Are you part of any on-campus groups and why did you join?
I am part of a couple of groups on campus. Currently, I’m serving as the Public Relations Coordinator for the Latin American Student organization on campus. I got involved with them my sophomore year and loved their mission to spread cultural competence and celebrate diversity on campus. Along the same thread, I am also connected to the Center for Research and Creative Activity at RIC. They provide opportunities for students to get involved in research, so I have focused my outreach within the program on minority and underrepresented students.
Can you describe your favorite CV memory?
My favorite CV memory was actually in a meeting with my CV advisor, Ben. During the meeting, another CV student came and joined the conversation. It ended up becoming a really meaningful discussion, where we exchanged our own tips and tricks that we have each picked up at RIC and wanted each other to know. It was a small thing, but it’s always great to be able to share the things that have helped me along the way with someone who is just starting out as a freshman. The whole thing was a little reminder to me that sometimes the best mentors are your peers and in that regard, we should use those around us to our advantage.
Describe a time when CV helped you through a stressful situation, if any?
Late last semester, I was scrambling to find someone to recommend me to the McNair program! I had heard about it just a couple weeks before the deadline and knew that I wouldn’t have time to find a faculty member to write a recommendation for me. I told Ben, my CV advisor, what was going on and he was more than willing to write me one in less than a week. Thankfully, all turned out well and I was accepted into the program!
Can you speak on being a Mcnair scholar (what that means, what do you do etc.)?
Becoming a McNair Scholar was one of those serendipitous things that worked out for the best. I had been reaching out to faculty for months trying to get involved in research before a friend casually mentioned this new program and I applied. I really couldn’t be more grateful for it because of the amount of holistic support I have received from all of my mentors and peers. The program is meant to prepare underrepresented, low income, or first-generation college students for doctoral degrees (through involvement in research) to increase diversity within academia. Since the beginning of the summer, I have been working on my independent research project with my mentor, Dr. Megan Sumeracki, and presenting at conferences and workshops along the way. I also began working on my graduate school applications with the help of my McNair advisor, Brianna Edwards.
How does it feel to be graduating in 3 years? Do you have post-college plans?
Graduating in three years is crazy! It was definitely something that I didn’t have planned so when I realized that I had the opportunity, it kicked things into high gear. It took some convincing for me to believe that I’ve earned this for myself, so it’s going to be a really proud moment for me and my family in May. I am currently applying to graduate school! I have a couple of different kinds of programs that I am applying to, but the ultimate goal is certainly to earn my PhD.
What would you say to donors who are consistently giving to CV and making this resource available to you?
I think the most important thing to let donors know is that their generosity is always something that CV students are going to pay back in a much bigger way. The opportunities that are made available to students through programs like College Visions, PEP, or McNair are ones that directly improve the students outlook on their ability to succeed. Continuing these efforts makes it so that students can see themselves at a true advantage because they have these programs, mentors and networks to benefit from. It spreads the message that the talk about diversity in education isn’t temporary. The investment is permanent, and continuous because all students, regardless of background, matter.
If you would like to support more students like Johanny along their college journey, please click here and give by December 31st. Any amount can change the course of a student’s life for the better. Thank you!