Coordinator of the Month: Bernice Rosas
Name: Bernice Rosas
Hometown: Manteca, CA
College Attended / Major: UC Riverside Political /Science Major
HealthCorps School Placement/State/City: Health Careers Academy High School, Stockton, California
Fun Fact: I am probably the biggest dog lover you’ll ever meet. I refer to my 2 dogs as my “kids” and some students actually believe I have 2 kids!
Layla Ronan: How did you become involved with HealthCorps?
Bernice Rosas: After graduating from UC Riverside, I decided that I wanted to spend my time gaining real world experience before pursuing a Masters. I came across HealthCorps after researching non-profits and realized that its mission to promote healthier lifestyles to teens was something I definitely wanted to be a part of.
LR: What has been the highlight of your placement so far?
BR: There are so many highlights to choose from! I would have to say that one important highlight would have to be receiving the Tool Box For Education grant provided by Lowes. HCA’s Garden Club students have been so passionate about their small space that winning this grant has proven a great victory for them. Seeing the students’ reactions upon hearing the news was something I’ll never forget. Knowing that I played a part of such a great moment with the help from our community partners was an experience I’ll cherish forever.
LR: Outside of the classroom, what are some of the activities that you are involved with?
BR: Outside of the classroom, I host an after school Mexican Folkoric Dance Club in which students have been completely invested in. Folkorico has always been a passion of mine and sharing what I know with my group of students is such an awesome opportunity. The students have become such great performers! Also, the Garden Club after school has grown tremendously. When I first began as a coordinator I continued the Garden Club with little hope or direction, but after receiving the help from outside community partners and seeing how invested the students were, I continued my efforts to make the garden sustainable. Now upon winning the $5000 grant, the students can make their garden dreams a reality!
LR: What do you plan to pursue after your service to HealthCorps is complete?
BR: I recently have been admitted into the University of San Francisco’s Masters of Public Affairs program for Fall 2016. Working for HealthCorps peaked my interest in community engagement whether in the school with student and staff participation or outside the community through partnerships and the public. With my political background, I hope to engage and inform communities to rally around important issues whether in health or other topics such as the pursuit of higher education for students who come from low income communities.
LR: What is one thing you have learned from your placement that you will be able to carry with you as you move forward in life?
BR: It’s hard to pin point one thing, honestly. I came into this organization not knowing what to expect and not knowing what I was capable of. I definitely have gained more confidence personally and have learned the importance of fostering meaningful relationships with students and the community.
We want to thank Bernice Rosas for her exceptional work and congratulate her for being this month’s coordinator of the month.