Saturday, June 9, 2018

Courage, heart and brains: Parker student represents empowerment in action

Catherine W. Idzerda,

Parker High School senior Gisela Sarabia Sandoval poses for a portrait. Sarabia Sandoval had to leave most of her family in Mexico to pursue an education in the United States.

Heart, backbone, vision and brains.

Those four qualities, in that order, have made Gisela Sarabia Sandoval a success.

Loss, grief and loneliness have accompanied her every step of the way.

When Gisela walked across the stage at Parker High School’s graduation ceremony Friday, few people who saw her had any sense of what she carries.

It’s not surprising that the staff at Parker High school chose her as their standout senior.

Gisela was born in the United States and lived here until she was 10 years old. Her family then returned to Mexico.

“It was a great change,” Gisela said. “The educational system isn’t good for low- and middle-class students.”

When she was 16, she was given a choice: work in Mexico or pursue education in the United States. ...

She chose education. ...

Next year, Gisela plans to go to Beloit College and major in international relations. She wants to work in public diplomacy [JB emphasis], a field that involves working on social programs through the U.S. government. Public diplomats also work on public policy in developing countries.

“My main goal as a foreign service officer would be to promote the United States abroad,” Gisela explained. ... 

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