Breanna Carpenter, a freshman honors student at Arizona State University, takes a holistic approach to social change. Her personal experience with the foster care system inspired her to pursue a social work major and advocate for foster youth. She pursues a variety of opportunities to activate her passions while developing new skills. As President of the Bridging Success student organization, Breanna mentors other foster youth at ASU and provides personal and academic support through graduation. As a board member of Fostering Advocates Arizona, Breanna helps those who have "aged out" of the foster system transition to a new stage in life by advocating for policy reform. She also finds time to work at a law office which is helping her discern whether she wants to affect change as a family lawyer and represent children in the foster system. Breanna's capacity for serving and inspiring others makes her a true Sun Devil Changemaker.
At 15-years-old, I found myself placed in Arizona's child welfare system. I discovered just how challenging every aspect of life becomes while in foster care. Through this experience, I recognized the need for social change and my passion for studying social work emerged. I believe that education and a strong support system play a vital role in self-development. Seeking to make a difference, I became involved in programs that align with my belief in the power of education to impact foster youth. First, to help former foster youth at ASU, I started and became President of the Bridging Success club to create a community of students with this history. Concurrently, I am a squad leader in the Public Service Academy, which allows me to demonstrate leadership across sectors. I am working with a team of faculty and students to conduct research about how to enhance educational outcomes for foster youth. In addition, I was elected to the board of Fostering Advocates Arizona, which allows me to advocate for policy reform in child welfare. I do not have to wait to graduate to make a difference, by conducting research, impacting policy, and leading other students, I can impact change right now.