How do you continue to grow and be a lifelong learner?

My involvement in DZ helped me realize the vastness of my future potential. As such, when I considered pursuing higher education, I knew I had the confidence and drive to excel. Although I just finished my education by completing a Masters in Public Administration, I know I will continue to absorb information and learn from those around me. I firmly believe that my education will continue for the rest of my life as I meet new people and have more unique experiences. From family life to my career and more, I will continue opening myself to new ideas and lessons. For example, I have begun to pursue a variety of volunteer opportunities to further expand my passions.


Who is your mentor, and how did he/she shape your career?

My parents and siblings have been instrumental in shaping my career. When my parents learned that I was deaf at the young age of 18 months, they learned American Sign Language to facilitate communication with me. My parents have always encouraged and supported my interests. Without their efforts, I would have had a much longer road to success. My brother Brian is also Deaf and has been an inspiration and great support throughout my life as we tackle similar challenges together. My two older siblings also encourage me, through tough love, to push my limits and strive beyond the expectations set for me by society.


What words of wisdom do you live by?

Gallaudet’s first deaf president, Irving King Jordan, said, “Deaf people can do anything hearing people can do, except hear.” The life-threatening illnesses I have faced throughout my life have made me realize that life is too short to not take advantage of every possible opportunity, so this advice helps me make the most of every day I’m given. My family is my top priority no matter what, and they push me to be the best version of myself possible. Regardless of society’s assumptions about my abilities, my support system helps me strive for more in every aspect of my life.