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Raven Rodriguez-David

565

Bold Points

2x

Finalist

2x

Winner

Bio

As a current Black and Latino, LGBTQ+ 17 year old enthusiast to follow the path of becoming a creative director, developing brand and artist concepts for the entertainment industry.

Education

Pace High School

High School
2022 - 2024

Miscellaneous

  • Desired degree level:

    Master's degree program

  • Majors of interest:

    • Public Relations, Advertising, and Applied Communication
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Public Relations and Communications

    • Dream career goals:

      Public services

      • Volunteering

        Montifiore Project Bravo — My role was pack bags and set up tabling for the food pantry.
        2022 – Present

      Future Interests

      Advocacy

      Volunteering

      Brandon M. Greber Memorial Scholarship
      When I think about the military, I see an opportunity not just to protect our country (meaning the land itself), but to protect the dreams, the families, and the the diverse lives of the individuals who live within it. Joining the military, I want to fight for those who might not have the means or the capabilities to do so. America is such a diverse country so when we think of it we must also consider those from minority communities, the disabled, and even the mentally ill. We have to ensure that every individual, regardless of their background, has the chance to build a future they can be proud of, for themselves and for their families. Growing up in such a lively place of New York City, and being an individual from a low income, Black and Latino community I empathize deeply with the struggles faced by marginalized groups in finding safe spaces and acceptance, while still having pride in the place I grew up in. Joining the military is my way of contributing to this beautiful vision of unison. I want to be apart of an institution that will uphold the values of inclusivity, service, and union. Not only do I want to join to defend the real meaning of America's values, but to advocate for the rights and dignity with everyone within our boarders. My motivation comes from a deep-seated desire to grow as a person and to make a difference. I want to gain skills and experiences that will help me grow personally and career-wise. Pursuing my education, especially at Rutgers University, is crucial for me to understand what it means to serve my country and protect those around me. With my career aspirations in mind, when I look ahead I want to provide more exposure to the different experiences of people living in this country. I want people to be able to feel seen and find community within those around them, and even people from different parts of the country. It’s important to both fight for what's right and provide environments which harvest support for everyone. I can only do this if I genuinely understand what its like to fight for my country and protect those around me. I aspire to pursue a career in creative directing for a company that breaks free from conventional ideas defining mainstream media, and instead celebrates the diversity in both myself and others. Whether this be in the field of entertainment or community building , I'll continue to fight for what's right. I’ll get to that point by studying communications at Rutgers University, though since I'm from low-income, applying to these scholarships are important to be able to achieve success through such an accredited school. My educational goals of earning a degree at Rutgers University is a crucial step in life that will help me communicate and advocate for the causes i believe in (both within and outside of military service).
      Antony Cesar Memorial Scholarship
      A unique challenge I’ve been facing is learning how to accept my identity not only as an Afro-Latino student, but as an LGBTQ+ individual (specifically in the trans community). The struggle in finding myself and accepting my unique identity dates back to even when I was little. As I first started my major years in school, my father won the lottery for entrance into a New York charter school called Success Academy. Attending a charter school, the differences between me and those around me were more evident than ever. In elementary school, my tanned skin contrasted the lighter shades of my classmates as I sat with my hair out in an afro, simply listening to what the teacher was instructing. Often, other kids were tempted to pull on it, regularly questioning why I didn't brush it. I was very confused; I did brush my hair, a lot actually, but it wasn't flat and shiny like the kids around me. I liked my hair but didn't really pay much attention to it, so why did others? Still in a charter school system and entering middle school, I’d wear pants for our school uniforms, rather than skirts that were requested for girls to wear. Despite only having one pair of uniform pants and three skirts, those pants were used and reused. It didn't matter if I got paint or dirt on them; I was persistent in wearing them. Unfortunately, I already stood out in a lot of ways visually, wearing dirty clothes to school was out of the question. Having to wear skirts and uniform shirts made my heart sink, accentuating changes my body underwent with puberty, even throughout my high school years. I hated how clothes fit me, the feeling of my own skin. I didn't want to go outside like that, I didn't want to be seen like that, I’d even avoid my reflection in car windows (New York has a lot of cars-). As I aged, I noticed that my likes and interests contradicted that of others. My identity as a whole was constantly put under a microscope. Girls didn't want to socialize with me because I didn't like the things they liked. Boys didn't want to befriend me because it would mean they “liked me” and I was just too boyish; they’d be made fun of. The binary constraints of boy or girl, Black or Latino, began to paint the narrative of my life and I hated it. As I entered my later years in highschool, I began to use social media more heavily. On youtube and various platforms on the internet, I was exposed to new terms such as “trangender” “non-binary” and “LGBTQ”. I was so surprised yet relieved that other people in this world felt similar about their identities as I did with mine. In fact, I didn't even know there was a whole community of people (especially black people) dedicated to LGBTQ+ progressive change within America, especially for the trangender community. It shocked me because my history should not just be something mentioned once then skipped over for the rest of our lives especially in school, and it felt like throughout my life I haven't been exposed to any of this. I felt a responsibility to be more involved in my community and those around me. As a result I decided I'd change my ways and become more active with those around me. I joined my school's student government and during my 12th grade year, I am grateful to share that I earned the title of 12th grade representative. I was able to meet new people in my grade level and share the voices of those around me. I helped develop school-wide assemblies, creating events where people can showcase their unique identities (whether that be pride-themed events or cultural assemblies). At Montifiore’s HIV Prevention Center, I helped aid in the program’s food pantry, providing nutrient-rich food distribution to Bronx Residence of low income. I was able to meet different families and talk to people, opening my eyes to the different struggles those around me faced. At the center, I also was able to provide support referrals to the LGBTQ community on HIV prevention awareness. This was very important to me considering the misinformation the community around me had about HIV, and how prominently the AIDS crisis affected the LGBTQ community. Being involved in my community more not only opened my eyes to how diverse those around me are, but helped me learn to accept myself more and be okay with who I am. I want to help create safe spaces for marginalized or underrepresented groups, because I know that's something I struggled with growing up. This aligns with my carrer aspirations. I plan to study communications at a highly-reviewed university, attempting to be a creative director for media or entertainment industry. I will do so by going down the route of becoming a copywriter. While I'm still exploring who I am as a person, I've come a long way and I'm proud of myself.