Spotlight On Dreamer Alumni: Stephanie Sosa

For July's Spotlight On Dreamer Alumni, we chat with Stephanie Sosa, a Dreamer graduate from our Melrose I cohort. A big thank you to Stephanie for sharing her story, which we hope you will enjoy as much as we do!

Name: Stephanie Sosa

Dreamer Cohort: Melrose I

Year joined program/Which grade were you in?: 3rd grade

What did you think about “I Have A Dream” – New York when you were in school? I was very appreciative of “I Have A Dream.”  I had somewhere to go after school and during the summer.  There was always something exciting going on and I never wanted to miss a day.

What High School did you attend, and what year did you graduate?  Talent Unlimited, Class of 2008

   Stephanie Sosa in her NYU cap and gown!

Stephanie Sosa in her NYU cap and gown!

Did you go to college/secondary school? If so, where and what did you study? Siena College, Social Work Class of 2012 and New York University- Wagner School of Public Service, Master of Urban Planning Class of 2014

What are you doing now? I graduated with my master’s degree in May and finishing up my community development fellowship at Fordham Bedford Housing until the end of June.

How would you explain the “I Have A Dream” program to someone who had never heard of it? The “I Have a Dream” program is a network of people who believe that children in need have the right to decide who they want to be in the future.  “I Have A Dream” provides Dreamers with the resources they need in order for them to benefit from the education system as much as possible and introduces them to a new family of people who supports and believes in them.

How did being a Dreamer affect you? Being a Dreamer raised my self-esteem and taught me that I can be whatever I want to be as long as I work for it.  I also gained a lot of academic and social skills that have allowed me to excel as a student and professional.

What were some of your favorite memories about being a Dreamer? I loved spending time and growing with my cohort.  We had our ups and downs, but we became a family and always supported each other. 

Would you be where you are today without “I Have A Dream” – New York? Why or why not? I believe that I would have gone to college and graduate school, but my situation would have completely different.  The level of support that I received while being in the program allowed me to accomplish a lot more than I probably would have been able to on my own.

What does your family think of “I Have A Dream” – New York? My family is appreciative of the program and all of the opportunities that it has provided for me. 

Are you still involved with “I Have A Dream” – New York? How? I am still involved with “I Have a Dream.”  I have spoken to Dreamers at different events about my experiences with the program.  I have also met with Dreamer Alumni in the past. 

 If you are a Dreamer Alum who would like to share your story for the blog, please contact Thierry Cazeau at