Empowering young latinas through a non-profit efforts
Laura Sandoval, Alpha Chapter’s Fall 2012 Sigma Class is the president and founder of Lucha Latina Inc. She graduated in May of 2015 from the University of Florida as a first-generation college student, and shortly thereafter launched the non-profit with the help of other sisters and close friends of hers who shared like-minded ideas and values. She now attends Harvard University studying business.
The mission of Lucha Latina Inc. is to empower young latinas across the nation from all walks of life, regardless of income levels and socio-economic backgrounds in order to help them achieve their academic, professional, and personal goals. Lucha Latina Inc. aims to serve as a resource by providing financial aid, mentorship/guidance, networking opportunities, and potential career placements.
A message from Laura Sandoval on what inspired her to create Lucha Latina:
“Like many other immigrant families, I grew up with very humble beginnings. I spent much of my childhood ‘living poor’ and ‘feeling dumb.’ My mom, sister, and I survived off of food stamps in New York City and I was placed in ESOL and remedial reading classes for the first few years of elementary school. Yet, despite my conditions my parents always stressed the importance of education and did everything in their power to keep my younger sister and I sharp in school. All of their encouragement eventually paid off when I received my acceptance letter to attend the University of Florida in February 2011.
I worked very hard throughout college, but all that hard work wouldn’t have gotten me far without walking through some serendipitous doors. I don’t think it’s all a coincidence, all that’s happened in my life. I believe most of it was the hand of God and the hearts of some loving, helpful people that took a chance in this little cholita from Queens, NY. I wouldn’t have gotten where I am if it weren’t for the help of others and that is why I started Lucha Latina. I wanted to create something that would truly give young Latinas like myself a chance to succeed in this society and economy by equipping them with the tools necessary to achieve their goals. I wanted to create a lasting legacy and I am so glad that I made that decision at 22 years old.”
You can support Laura and the Lucha Latina team by visiting luchalatina.com.