Meet Emely
Emely Rodriguez is a first-generation Afro-Latina who was born and raised in New York City. She is currently in her final year of undergrad at the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education. She has obtained a minor in African American Studies and is expected to complete her degree in Biomedical Sciences this upcoming spring. Throughout her college career, Emely has volunteered in different programs catered to help children of color navigate their education, health, and life in general. She was the president of a program called You Can Too, which focused on giving back to the community through mentoring Black and Brown students, and providing a safe space for their growth and personal expression. In the future, Emely hopes to practice medicine in underserved communities, and be the supportive figure she wishes she and her mother had when navigating this country for the first time. She hopes to shed more light on the struggles of first-generation students, and hopefully create more spaces that prioritize their mental health and highlight the pressures that they face every day.
Posts by Emely
Chapter 6: Being Comfortable With Saying No

Recently I discovered the importance of the word “no”. It’s such a simple word that surprisingly becomes very difficult to use as you get older. More specifically, the word “no” adopts an air of forbiddenness if you are a person who tends to consider the feelings of others before your own.

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Chapter 5: Making Your Own Decisions

For as long as I can remember, every part of my life had a plan to be followed. From home life to education, it always felt like every minute of my time was already accounted for. As a first generation American, I always felt an immense amount of pressure to stay on course. Whatever you do, don’t deviate from the plan because you’re lucky to even have one in the first place. But what happens when you stray off of the beaten path, and start making decisions that aren’t pre-approved?

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Chapter 4: Conquering Fear

We first-generation students are rarely ever “one trick ponies”. More often than not, we find ourselves having our hands in many pots: school, extracurricular activities, jobs, maintaining a social life, etc.

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Chapter 3: Making Yourself Proud

As a first generation student, it can be easy to get caught up in making everyone proud. The
parent(s) who made endless sacrifices, the family back home who didn’t have the opportunity to
come to the U.S, the teachers and counselors who advocated for you and believed in your
abilities, etc. There are so many people who ultimately contribute to the professional you end up
becoming. After all, the quote “it takes a village” isn’t famous for nothing.

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Chapter 2: Running Your Own Race

This month marks two years since COVID-19 changed all of our lives forever. From keeping up with a fast-paced lifestyle to being forced to stay at home for months on end, the pandemic forced many of us to slow down and take a huge pause in our lives. Those of us who had the
privilege of staying home during the peak of infection, were subjected to a heightened new reality: the social media reality. Even prior to the pandemic, social media still played a major role in all of our lives.

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