Career Confidence Post-Promise0
It’s graduation season and that means another group of Promise Scholars will join the job force. In this week’s blog post, we caught up with three college graduates and asked them about their career goals and how The Kalamazoo Promise (The Promise) has impacted their lives.
Jesus Morales (left), Valeria Montero (top right), and Lyric Kleber (bottom right) all graduated in 2019. With their professional lives ahead of them and their collegiate experiences fresh in their minds, these three young adults are grateful that they do not have to worry about loan payments.
“I have no idea where I would be today without The Promise,” Montero said. “To have the opportunity to focus on just school during college has been such a gift.”
Graduating from Michigan State University (MSU) with a Bachelors of Science in Anthropology, Montero currently works as a Research Assistant with the Division of Pain Research at the University of Michigan (U of M).
“When starting undergrad, I had a focus in healthcare,” she said. “I knew I wanted to work in the healthcare field and saw that research was a good way to do this.”
Kleber has also demonstrated an interest in healthcare, having received a Bachelors of Science in Public Health from U of M.
This summer, Kleber will apply what he has learned to an internship with University of Michigan Athletics.
“I will be working on a development and fundraising project, as well as role connecting with alumni and keeping them engaged,” he stated. “I will also be studying for the GRE and then hopefully going to grad school in a year.”
“I want to use this summer as a gap year to explore public health and understand what I want to do long term.” Kleber explained. “The skills I gain from this internship should be applied to my future job.”
Kleber sees his career path in public health as a way of paying forward the benefits that he has received. Similarly, Morales also hopes to give back to the community that helped get him to where he is today.
“I did not really care about school and I did not do my homework,” Morales admitted. “It was not until my final two years of high school that teachers helped me get excited about college.”
“I work on the analytics team that focuses on writing reports for different departments across the organization,” Morales said. “The job is challenging and reminds me of why I selected my major.”
As a volunteer, Morales works as a tutor through his fraternity and the Hispanic American Council to help academically encourage students who were once in his position.
“I never had a mentor in the academic area, and I would like to provide that for others,” he said.
With a bright future ahead of them, each of these graduates have pearls of wisdom and encouraging words to share with Promise Scholars who are preparing for college.
“Use your resources and find out as much as possible about The Promise” Monterro stressed. “I graduated high school and had already applied to college before I realized that The Promise covered private schools. Regardless, I am still very thankful for my degree from MSU.”
“Never be afraid to ask The Promise staff questions,” Kleber added. “I was able to study abroad, and The Promise helped pay for it. I wish I would have engaged with the resources given to me earlier.”
“The Promise is truly amazing,” Morales said. “Not a lot of people have this kind of an opportunity so do your best and keep moving forward with your education.”
Thanks guys! We appreciate you taking the time to share your experiences with us and wish you the best of luck with your respective futures.