January 2014 Junior Alumnus of the Month
CHCI Program: 2012 R2L NextGen
School: Albert G. Lane College Preparatory Technical High School
Hometown: Chicago, Illinois
Since graduating from the CHCI R2L NextGen program in 2012, Efren Ramirez, Jr. has applied the leadership skills that he has gained to make his community a better place for all, beginning with his education.
After graduating from high school later this spring, Efren will be the first in his family to pursue a college education. Efren was selected to be a prestigious POSSE Scholar and will join a cohort of other Chicago area students at St. Olaf College in Minnesota on a full scholarship. He is committed to applying more of the same effort in college that he did while in high school. Currently, this senior at Albert G. Lane College Preparatory Technical High School takes a lot of pride in his academic achievements. He currently holds a 4.2 grade point average and has taken rigorous courses to help fuel his mind.
Efren is also committed to making his community a better place for all through civic engagement. In December of 2013, Efren graduated from the Chicago Freedom School (CFS) Fellowship program, whose mission is to create a new generation of young critical thinkers who use their unique experiences and power to create a just world. One of the projects that he participated in was the Campaign to Create a Healthy Community. Along with his peers, Efren learned about issues related to anti-oppression and conducted workshops at the Muhammed Ali Community Center in his community.
He has continued his involvement with CFS as a member of the Youth Leadership Board. As a board member he helps inform, shape and evaluate youth programs at CFS, including the recruitment and selection of each year’s Freedom Fellows.
Efren is a proud CHCI R2L NextGen graduate. He aspires to continue making a positive difference in his community through education and civic engagement. He credits his participation in CHCI’s youth leadership and civic engagement program as one of his motivators.
“CHCI’s R2L NextGen program experience changed my life. This program helped get me out of my shell and become a stronger, more confident person. It also taught me about our government and the importance of my voice in advocacy. R2L NextGen opened my eyes to the big world around me, I am not the same person who came to this program.” shared Efren. CHCI is proud to have Efren as part of the CHCI familia!