Connecticut Family is dedicated to showing the good and promise that we can expect from upcoming generations by highlighting the leadership and inspiring activities of area young people.
The Young Leaders series recognizes the community builders of tomorrow: – students who see an outstanding need and work to meet it; who mentor and nurture others; who show leadership in inclusion, compassion, and advocacy; who work diligently (and often quietly) to further a cherished cause. Each day, and all around us, young people are motivated and working to better this world: to help, to heal, to share, to acknowledge, to grow.
We’re asking regional educators are asked to nominate young people deserving of recognition. The first three profiles appear in this issue; we look forward to writing many more.
If you know a young person making a difference in our world, please (with parental or guardian permission) send a brief write-up detailing their accomplishments, school, grade and contact information to Managing Editor Faye Parenteau, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Andhrose (Rose) Bazil is a senior at New London High School and participates in the Higher Edge college access program. Rose came from Haiti in 2014 at the age of 13, not knowing how to speak English, according to Chris Soto, executive director of Higher Edge.
“Rose takes advantage of every opportunity we have offered here, including college visits and extra tutoring or advisor sessions, leaving no doubt that she will flourish in a rigorous academic environment,” he says.
CF: What are your career goals?
RB: “I want to go to college and major in political science, and I want to become a lawyer.
CF: Why those choices?
RB: “For a lot of reasons. One of them is that I hate seeing people thrown in jail just for being at the wrong place at the wrong time, and having no relation to the crime that was committed. I’m also one of those people who likes to argue, and I want to be able to argue my point of view.”
CF: Do you think you would practice in the private sector?
RB: “No, I would be a public defender so the community has more access to me. I feel like if I was private, it would be harder for them to reach out to me.”
CF: What situations helped you make this choice?
RB: “I was involved in Hearing Youth Voices, which is a youth-led program for mostly kids of color. We meet every Thursday and talk about news and happenings in our community. We talk about how we want to do something about it. If something is happening in New London, we want to see how we can change it. We also go to protests to advocate for social change and justice in other places, like Baltimore.”
CF: Do you have a lot of support from family and community?
RB: “Yes, my mom is really supportive. She always tells me that whatever I choose in the future, she’ll always be there for me. Through Hearing Youth Voices, I’m also involved and supported by the community.”
CF: How did Higher Edge help you?
RB: “I wanted to go to college, but I didn’t know how to apply, or how to ask for money.” She laughs. “I still don’t know how to write the perfect essay, but Higher Edge really helped me with those things. Whenever there’s a scholarship application deadline, they tell me. And if I want to visit a college, they can get me a ride there.”
CF: How do you plan to achieve your goals?
RB: “By staying in school. I’m going to be as involved as I can. Once I go to college, I’m going to apply for internships that are related to law or politics. I want to stay motivated. I applied to 13 colleges and got into seven. I’ve already made my decision and sent the money for Providence College. I’m so excited!”