In late August, Runelvi Delarosa began the first part of her adult journey when she headed off to the State University of New York at Oswego. This tenacious and dedicated young woman, who will study physical therapy, is a 2012 graduate of Information Technology High School and was an active participant at the Riis Academy InfoTech after-school program.
While Runelvi holds her high school in high regard, she stresses that it was her after-school experience at Riis Academy that paved the way for her to become the first member of her Dominican-American family to go to college. Before joining Riis Academy InfoTech, “I didn’t know what I was doing. I didn’t even know how to keep myself busy.” That all changed when Riis Academy’s talented youth staff helped Runelvi see her potential and the possibilities before her as well as offering her the tools she would need to take this big step. “I learned how to apply for financial aid…Plus, Regine and Maribel were there to listen when I needed someone to talk to,” she added, referring to Regine Lambert and Maribel Martinez, Riis Academy’s Case Managers at InfoTech. “And I got so much help with my writing.” She met regularly with College Prep Associate Ray Seaborough to build up her college portfolio and seek out colleges that best represented her interests and career goals.
The sky’s the limit
Runveli worked as a Program Aide with Riis Academy during her senior year, assisting the Coordinator and other staff members in key programming areas and gaining valuable work experience. She was also a member of the Jacob Riis Youth Council and spent a good amount of time encouraging her parents to allow her to apply to colleges outside of New York City. She’s looking forward to studying upstate. “I love it. It reminds me of the Dominican Republic. So many trees and so much nature.” With the firm background she gained at Riis Academy and her own inner strength and work ethic, the sky’s the limit for Runelvi.
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