She really is the real deal.” With those words her teacher and senior advisor at Beacon High School summed up Marisol’s impact on the school, accomplishments and passion for justice. That combination was displayed in her sophomore year, when she was an effective leader of a schoolwide sit-in protest about her school’s handling of incidents linked to social justice. As a senior she is the chairperson of the Latinx Student union. She has also been active in a vaccine registration program sponsored by the Academy of Medicine and Public Health, and has mentored younger students in neighboring schools promoting STEM studies.

Another teacher wrote of Marisol’s interest in restorative justice, having trained to be a facilitator in a citywide program for high school students. She brought those lessons into the classroom, where she “listened to her classmates deeply and without judgment, and shifted classmates’ thinking by sharing her own incisive point of view,” supporting peers in “difficult conversations about race, dismantling systems of oppression and social justice.”

Marisol’s academics are outstanding, and she wrote in her essay about finding “my skills of problem-solving, observation and creativity to fit the STEM enthusiast box.” While her focus has been on medicine, “It wasn’t until my first hackathon that I realized the extent of technology in my future career path.” Now she aims to combine medicine and technology to better deliver health care, especially in marginalized communities like those she knows well as the daughter of Mexican immigrants.

“No matter the path,” wrote her senior advisor, Marisol will “bring great pride to her parents, myself and anyone who has witnessed Marisol creating the goodness this world needs more of.”

The teacher who made the greatest difference in Marisol's life (without knowing it!) was her 5th-grade teacher, Ms. Lopez. She was one of the first teachers to see Marisol's efforts and congratulate her on more than her grades but her leadership, academic commitment, and comraderie, as well.

Many thanks to The New York Community Trust for supporting Marisol through her college journey.