BRONX, N.Y.— Lehman College students Krystal Perez and Imani DuBois are recipients of this year’s Latino Trendsetter Scholarship, given to students who have demonstrated strong leadership skills at work and in class. The two were honored at the 11th Annual Latino Trendsetter Awards and Scholarship Gala, held recently at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Manhattan.
After years of balancing full-time work with being a full-time student, Perez, a social work major, is looking forward to graduating next spring. It’s been a tough road for the Bronx native, but Perez is nothing if not highly motivated.
Growing up, Perez saw first-hand how the city’s social work agencies worked—four of her relatives went through the foster care system. All around her she saw friends, family, and neighbors struggle to move up and out of poverty. Her goal is to help people, especially children, find resources that will keep them on the right path.
Perez is currently applying to various graduate programs in social work, and hopes to continue her studies after graduation. In the meantime, she’s completing two internships: one at 100 Hispanic Women Inc. and the other at the Northside Center for Child Development.
DuBois is a Florida transplant. She traded the state’s palm trees, sunny skies, and year-round warm weather for New York’s grey and chilly winters. But, it wasn’t a hard decision to make—she comes from a long line of Lehman graduates, all of whom encouraged her to apply, and she often visits her grandparents who live in the Bronx.
For the past four years, she’s been spending her summers as an intern at Bronx Lebanon Hospital, where her grandmother works as an administrator. It was her supervisor at the hospital who recommended Dubois for the scholarship. DuBois is planning on majoring in psychology.
As scholarship recipients, both Perez and DuBois received a monetary award to be used toward their studies.
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