Student spotlight: Diana Garcia encourages local youth to go above and beyond


Shanice Davis, Features Editor

Diana Garcia is a first generation college student here at CSUSM, who works closely with youth within the community, striving to be a positive role model in each of her student’s lives, helping them on their road to success.

Garcia is a senior majoring in Human Development with an emphasis in Counseling. She is not actively involved in student affairs on campus, however she is a leader throughout the community.

She currently works for Escondido Education Creating Opportunities Making Partnership And Connecting Teens (COMPACT) as a youth coach, while previously gaining the bulk of her experience through Project Recreation, Employment readiness Academic achievements Communication skills and Healthy lifestyles (REACH) through the Vista Community Clinic in Oceanside as a Site Assistant.

“I believe all the previous jobs I’ve had, were stepping stones. They bring me one step closer to my future goal, which is to become a LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker),” said Garcia.

Throughout her educational career, Garcia has had the opportunity to have courses that dealt exclusively with her her career field, which makes it easier for her to apply it to early life with working with students, but everything is not set in stone as each case is uniquely different.

“My studies have taught me that I am continuously learning everyday. It doesn’t matter how much I know there is always something new I can learn,” said Garcia.

Given that the majority of Garcia’s students are of Latino descent, it helps that she is Latina herself in order to make similar connections with her students.

“I wanted to work with a specific population that would allow me to relate better, therefore allowing me to build better rapport,” said Garcia.

“Being a Latina female was shown me many things. One of which is that being Latina is not always easy. We live in a society where we want to believe that there is equality. Unfortunately that is not completely true, through my struggles I have been able to be who I am today which is a strong, determined and hardworking Latina.”

Garcia strives to help her students grasp the concept of handwork and dedication, as that is what’s been the remedy to her success thus far.

“My ultimate goal is to show my students that there are no limits. And since the students I work with typically come from a minority group they are presented with multiple obstacles, but as they say ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.’ All of my students have potential that they sometimes don’t see it, but I do and I hope that they one day will see that too.”

As for words of wisdoms that have been part of Garcia’s remedy is the Biblical scripture, “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

“Sometime we get stuck on things we have no control over, and when we do at times we are too scared to change what is needed. Life’s a roller coaster and we have choices, simply don’t go on for the ride, go on and hold on tight and put your hands up and enjoy the ride.”