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Hometown: Denver, Colorado

School: Metropolitan State University of Denver

Major: Journalism

Placement: The Office of Sen. Michael Bennet

Gabriela Rodriguez is a first-generation college student at the Metropolitan State University of Denver. Throughout her life, Gabriela has faced many hardships that ultimately shaped her character and the person she is today. Gabriela’s inspiration comes from the strong Latinos in positions of leadership as professors, administrators and heads of committees. She realizes that though there is more work to be done, there are people who are already paving the way for young leaders like her.

Gabriela’s interest in language and writing increased her curiosity in cultural and political studies, which led her to pursue a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in anthropology. On campus, Gabriela serves as a student ambassador in the Learning Community and First Year Success Program. She has consistently worked to facilitate student engagement and cultural asset cultivation for first-year college students in their classrooms and through extracurricular events.

Gabriela decided to become a catalyst for cultural empowerment and founded an organization that supports immigrant and first-generation college students to succeed throughout their college career. She later joined her student government as Associate Vice-President and served on the Hispanic Serving Institution Task Force to advocate for the interest of Latino students on campus.

As a CHCI Intern, Gabriela hopes to develop her leadership skills and learn about improving her community through both policy and in the local, state and federal systems. In the future, Gabriela will use her communication skills to assist underrepresented communities.