I joined the Pathways Program at the start of my sophomore year. I transferred from a traditional high school to the Applied Technology Center, a smaller school with a heavier focus on college.
The Pathways Program has provided me with many leadership opportunities, such as co-leading my school's Friday Night Live (FNL) chapter. Some other opportunities the Pathways have provided me with are; my involvement in the Health Occupations Students of America Organization, which has taken me to multiple state and regional health conferences; the National Alliance on Mental Illness, which I was secretary of my junior year; I was also a Pathways Ambassador my sophomore year; I took two semesters of Sports Medicine ROP classes; I have volunteering experience at Heart of Compassion; I've participated in partnership programs with the Los Angeles Center for Alcohol and Drug Abuse, White Memorial Hospital, and Kaiser Permanente.
Some other extracurriculars I've done include two years in ASB, four college courses, a 4.0 GPA throughout all of high school, one year of mock trial competition, one semester of a culinary ROP class, I've been a member of College Bound Today, I am #1 in my class and I am in the running for valedictorian.
I will be graduating from the Health Sciences Pathways Program on June 9th, 2020, and I will continue my education at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Friday Night Live (FNL)
My Involvement in FNL
Friday Night Live (FNL) is one of many health clubs associated with the Health Sciences Pathway at ATC. I became a club member during my sophomore year and it quickly became my favorite club. A typical meeting begins with delicious snacks and fun ice breakers. FNL often brings guest speakers to our meetings to inform our members of the dangers of peer pressure and dangerous activities. This year, our FNL chapter focuses on using alternative methods to stay stress-free, such as drawing, taking hikes, playing an instrument, meditating, and more. I believe this year's focus has helped our members and I cope with the challenges of virtual learning and avoid substance use during this pandemic. FNL has many conferences (in-person and virtual) that allow our members to meet other chapters and learn leadership skills through workshops. During my senior year, I became FNL Vice President.
More About FNL
Founded in 1984 in Sacramento by the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, FNL's mission statement is to build partnerships for positive and healthy youth development which engage youth as active leaders and resources in their communities. FNL tries to make young people less likely to engage in problem behaviors, more likely to achieve in school, and more likely to attend higher education or secure a full-time job. This information and more can be found at https://fridaynightlive.tcoe.org/about-us/cfnlp-overview#:~:text=The%20California%20Friday%20Night%20Live%20Partnership%20(CFNLP)%20was%20developed%20in,as%20a%20pilot%20program%20dedicated.
I had the pleasure of joining the 2021 cabinet with two of my best friends. Our amazing President, Jennyfer Gonzales Perez (right), Vice President (myself), and wonderful Treasurer, Andrew Morales, have worked hard to earn our positions on the cabinet. Due to virtual learning, FNL had to adapt to some new changes. Fortunately, we've had the help of two FNL representatives, Fernando and Edgar, who host our stress-relieving drawing sessions. FNL has exceptional members who keep our meetings fun and entertaining even through screens. We're excited to bring new members to the 2022 cabinet.
FNL has always had the best group of members. Our cohort has always been family and we love welcoming new faces. The photo above is at the FNL Youth Summit 2020 in Anaheim, California. This was my favorite FNL trip. We stayed in beautiful hotels, ate mouthwatering food, attended a fun conference, and we even went to Disneyland... for FREE! Some of my favorite memories are with this group and the 2021 cabinet is excited to choose our next President from this group.
FNL's Impact On Me
FNL is by far my favorite school project. It's fun, it caters to youth, it's interactive, it's a safe environment, it's welcoming to everyone and it does real work in the real world. My friends and I have avoided drugs and alcohol and are advocates of using programs like FNL to build strong decision-making skills. In addition, some other skills FNL has taught me are public speaking skills, leadership skills, professional writing skills, outreach, and data collection. I'm grateful for the many opportunities FNL has provided me with and I am honored to be a part of a program that shares the same values as me. I take pride in my involvement in FNL because I've used my platform to change my community for the best.