“YPIE offered so many opportunities to get involved in, to help the community, and academic opportunities...The opportunities are endless.”
YPIE Scholar, 2017-2021, YPIE Science Research and YPIE Environthon Major
High School Graduate, Riverside High School, June 2021, Salutatorian
Incoming college student, Northeastern University, Engineering
How did you get involved in YPIE?
Evelyn is one of six children in her family, originally from Mexico. She first heard about YPIE when she was in 9th grade.
“I’ve always wanted to go to college and YPIE sounded like a great opportunity for me. When I started, it was very welcoming and the teachers were very supportive. YPIE really helped me to understand the topics I was learning at school and prepare for the Regents.”
During the summer before 10th grade, Evelyn participated in the YPIE Summer Entrepreneurship program. As part of this program, students choose a project that would make a positive impact in their community. Evelyn chose to focus on the environment -- and joined a group exploring recommendations to reduce the use of plastic bags in Yonkers.
“We presented our findings to everyone at YPIE, then had more opportunities to present and spread the message about plastic bag usage, including the Bedford 2020 Greenlight competition.”
What inspired you to join YPIE’s Science Research Major?
At the end of 9th grade, Evelyn applied to the YPIE Regeneron Science Research program. “I thought it was a unique opportunity that I didn’t think I would get anywhere else. I have always been interested in science. The idea of learning things about the environment and biology always interested me.”
In the future, Evelyn intends to further her research in addressing plastic pollution. “Being part of this Science Research program really made me love science more. It helped me to narrow my ideas of what I want to do in college -- and why I want to pursue that path.”
How did you feel being a part of the YPIE community?
“At YPIE. I made really good friends - they are hard workers. At YPIE, I met people who are like me.”
“I love everyone on the staff. I really built a connection with them through the years. I was really shy at the beginning, they were very supportive. So the relationship between me and them just grew. They helped me to come out of my shell.”
How did being part of YPIE help with the college process?
“I am the first in my family to go to college. My YPIE college advisor is just a wonderful person. She really picked me up when I was struggling. She made the college process much easier for me.”
Evelyn worked with her college advisor throughout the college process. During 10th and 11th grades, she visited several colleges, explored financial aid, and worked with her advisor to create her college list.
Evelyn applied to more than 20 schools. In February 2020, right before the world went into lockdown, Evelyn visited Northeastern as part of a YPIE college trip to Boston.
“After that trip, our Principal came to our classroom and asked students where we were thinking of applying. I said ‘Northeastern’ because of my recent visit but didn’t think it was within my reach. Then I started thinking about it -- and thought, ‘why not? I have to learn to be independent. It would be a great opportunity for me.’”
Evelyn’s college advisor recommended that she apply to Northeastern early decision to boost her chances. In February 2021, Evelyn received exciting news that she was admitted to Northeastern’s prestigious Engineering program.
“I told my mom first, my dad came in right after. They were so happy for me. My mom hugged me because I am accomplishing things that they have never been able to accomplish. When I told my college advisor, she was so happy for me. It meant so much to me as she really helped me to get there.”
Evelyn will proudly graduate in June 2021 as Salutatorian at Riverside High School.
“I’m so excited about the Engineering program at Northeastern. The experience they give you throughout the college years, the opportunity to do research with their faculty. It’s an excellent school.”
How did YPIE make a difference for you?
“YPIE offered so many opportunities to get involved in, to help the community, and academic opportunities. Without participating in these events, I wouldn’t have been able to get into Northeastern”
“YPIE helped me to find the confidence and the courage to speak up. It gave me the opportunity to meet different people and develop great relationships. The opportunities are endless.”