Life after YASI is unreal. I have had lots of accomplishments and breakthroughs as I headed back to school at the High School of Economics and Finance. I’ve been busy with clubs, preparation for college, competitions, and getting to figure out what to do with the knowledge I’ve obtained with my time at the Youth Advocacy Summer Institute. To start off I competed in a competition for FeedingAmerica in which a group of my classmates and I worked with an advertising agency to create an ad bringing awareness to the issue of hunger in America. We won 1st place with our ad being talked about being put in Times Square by the AdCouncil because of how professionally done it was. The campaign was called HungerHides, detailing all of the issues of hidden hunger in America.
YASI really prepared me to work collaboratively with others; working on my presentations skills and communication skills proved key in this competition. With a boost in confidence, I finished up my college applications and have received 3 acceptances so far with no rejection. My school’s cooking club has started up again in which I’m proud to be involved in again, as well a the school’s literary magazine.
During school hours I’m taking rigorous classes and one class in particular that I’m enjoying at the moment is Virtual Enterprise. This class is like a business in which we sell and buy items/services from other schools (know as firms). I’m part of the sales team in which I was elected to be the Sales Manager. We specialize in selling 401k plans and I participated in a Manhattan business plan competition where we took 1st place again. Although all of this is great my social life is going downhill because I barely have time to hang out with friends or even have time for myself. I have tried time management but as I take a CollegeNow course at Baruch it has become difficult. My entire weekend is full.
I feel happy and thankful but I really do hope it doesn’t take a toll on my mental health. Because as I learned at YASI I have to take care of my mental health above all else. Some things I’ve been trying to do is squeeze some football matches with my friends during some days, staying out late on Fridays to hang out with friends and playing Super Smash Bros on my Nintendo Switch. I hope I hear back for my acceptance to Baruch and continue my beautiful relationship with Youth Advocacy Corps.
-Isael Alfaro YASI ‘18