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Julia Santiago

CHCI-HEP CAMP Intern
Hometown: Homedale, Idaho
School: University of Idaho
Major: Elementary Education
Placement: The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics

Julia was born in the United States after her parents left Oaxaca, Mexico. She is currently a first-generation, first year student at the University of Idaho studying Elementary Education with an endorsement in English as a Second Language.  Julia and her sister are the first in the family to attend a four-year university.  She knows that her parents are very proud of her, and she is excited to share the American dream with her family.  Julia comes from a farm-working background, and it helped instill in her a passion to pursue higher education and overcome any obstacles she encounters along the way. She has excelled academically because she prepares tirelessly. Julia is always ready to learn from different educational opportunities, and her summers spent working in the fields motivates her to achieve the goals she has set for herself.

In high school, Julia’s father was diagnosed with a chronic kidney disease and her mother became the head of the household. Julia worked two jobs to help her mother pay the bills while taking dual enrollment classes and participating in extra-curricular leadership roles. Over the years, Julia’s parents have overcome numerous hardships and her father’s illness was no different.  She knew the family would overcome it as well.  Julia’s life experiences have led her to pursue a teaching career to help her family and give back to her community.

As a CHCI and CAMP intern, Julia hopes to gain knowledge on educational policies and to continue to develop her leadership skills. She wants to network, create new opportunities for her, and explore ways to give back to her community.