“There’s so much you can learn from your own heritage. Embrace your own ethnicity, embrace your upbringing, don’t shy away from it.”
Kelibeth Resto-Albelo is an alumna from Springfield, MA. She was born in Puerto Rico and was raised by a Puerto Rican family. As a Spanish major, Kelibeth was able to incorporate her heritage into her studies and supplement her bilingualism with professional skills.
“Youth development, diversity-inclusive practices, and global engagements are becoming more powerful and more implemented everyday.”
Will Jones first got involved working with the YMCA in Woodstock, Connecticut, during his time in college. He has since taken on increasing responsibility, and spent three and a half years in Madrid as the International Programs Coordinator at the YMCA of Spain.
"At UMass, I realized that learning Spanish is about immersing yourself in the cultures of the Spanish-speaking world. And that is why I decided to dive in and pursue my Spanish studies."
Victoria Abramchuk is an alumna from Agawan, MA. She graduated with three majors: Economics, Legal Studies, and Spanish. Her interest in Spanish comes from her passion for language and its power to connect people.
“I finally found my purpose at UMass. I realized I could be the voice of a whole community, especially in the science and medical areas, where Latinos are still the great minority.”
Melissa Rodríguez is a sophomore. She moved to the US from Cuba four years ago, and lives in Winthrop, MA. She is on the pre-med track pursuing a major in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, a secondary major in Spanish, and a certificate in Translation and Interpreting. She hopes to utilize her Latino culture in the fields of science and medicine.
“I believe that it is truly important for us to grow and step out of privilege here in the US. We take so many things for granted. Why not use your position and privilege to do good?”
Krista Webb is a Class of 2017 UMass alumna from Templeton, Massachusetts. Her cultural fluency and love for travel have opened countless doors for her both personally and professionally. Over the years, Krista has travelled to many different countries and her travels have solidified her passion for helping others and serving the community.
"Just as important as it is for teachers to be bilingual, educators also need to learn about the diverse cultures of the students and help them bring their own perspectives and experiences into the classroom."
Brook Hansel is a senior student from Lunenburg, Massachusetts. She will graduate at the end of spring 2019 with a primary major in Spanish and a secondary major in History. She is an athlete on the UMass cross country and track and field teams, and a member of the Commonwealth College. Next fall Brook will be living in Galicia, Spain. She has been awarded a Fulbright Fellowship.