Mikaela Lopez

University of Houston-Downtown

Mikaela Lopez, a second-year student at the University of Houston-Downtown, is a student leader active in issues of social inequality. For the past four years, she has worked closely with impoverished communities. With the help of the D.O.Gs (Disciples of God) organization at her church, Mikaela regularly organizes events that allow families to come together and enjoy meals. She has organized "Operation Best Christmas Ever" and "Operation Turkey" and bought toys, shoes and clothing for children. Mikaela has been involved in political campaigns and has reached out to encourage people of all ages, with an emphasis on the younger generation, to use their voices and to vote. Her convictions to bring about awareness on issues like women's inequality, sexual violence, and incarceration of non-violent convicted criminals are apparent in the efforts she puts forth. She is currently working on animal injustices and exploring new possibilities to raise awareness about the issue of stray and unsheltered animals. With a new grant, Mikaela plans to create billboards and signage in low-income communities to get animals off the street and into safe environments. Her advocacy, dedication, and kind leadership have inspired others to get involved and work alongside her.

Dr. Juan Munoz
University of Houston-Downtown

Personal Statement

Pay it forward - one act of kindness leads to another. This is what drives me. I genuinely care for the wellbeing of others; I have worked on issues faced by people who live in impoverished communities by, organizing events to feed the hungry, driving those without vehicles, and providing other assistance. During Thanksgiving and Christmas, I regularly organize events to bring families together, and volunteer to shop for clothes, shoes, and toys for many young children. Through this work, I have realized that if we want true social change, it must come from a higher source. I work on political campaigns to learn about and highlight issues like, the environmental changes, sexual violence, inequality for women and other minorities, and the faulty criminal system. I have done block walks, phone banks, passed out fliers, and spoken with students to understand where they stand on issues and the political process. In the midterm elections, I engaged with over 600 people to get out and vote and engaged over 30 peers to do the same. I have written letters to our senator about inequalities in the community, and urged him to focus on setting policies to make life better.

Mikaela Lopez
Biology: Class of 2021
written 2019

2019 Fellows Alphabetical by Institution

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Sarah Lutes, UNC Asheville Seda Sahin, Univeristy of Connecticut Bernardo Villarreal Rodríguez, Universidad de Monterrey Elizabeth Paige, University of Baltimore Itzel Velazquez, University of Central Arkansas Jordan Borenstein, University of Central Florida Hunter Caudillo, University of Central Oklahoma Delali Nenonene, University of Dayton April Singleton, University of Delaware Amanda Wittebort, University of Denver Mikaela Lopez, University of Houston-Downtown Nicolas Robledo, University of Illinois at Chicago Natalie Benson, University of Indianapolis Jocelyn Roof, University of Iowa Kaitlyn Frick, University of Kentucky Dyamond Gray, University of La Verne Sarah Nichols, University of Maine at Augusta Maheen Haq, University of Maryland, Baltimore County Madison LaCure, University of Massachusetts - Boston Marvens Pierre, University of Massachusetts Amherst Elizabeth Anusauskas, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Twisha Mohapatra, University of Massachusetts Lowell Shravya Jasti, University of Miami Jalen Rose, University of Michigan-Dearborn Robert Harper, University of Minnesota Danielle Friz, University of Missouri - St. Louis Daisy Ward, University of Montana Adrianna Pittman, University of Montana Western Lizbeth Perez Hernandez, University of Nebraska Omaha Kaitlin Griffin, University of New Hampshire Joyce Yao, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Yesika Sorto Andino, University of North Carolina at Charlotte Adriana Zarate, University of North Georgia Hector Robledo, University of North Texas at Dallas Sashay Carroll, University of Northern Iowa Carson Ball, University of Oklahoma Carter Gale, University of Pennsylvania John Farris, University of Redlands Mary-Kate McGeary, University of Rhode Island Lina Tori Jan, University of Richmond Nina Schneider, University of San DIego Nyteia Tyler, University of San Francisco Karen Padilla, University of South Carolina Beaufort Danica Leaphart, University of South Carolina, Columbia Shaneika Bowra, University of the District of Columbia Livia Karoui, University of the South Jordyn Gaurkee, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay Emiliana Lopez, University of Wisconsin - Madison Zach Atkins, University of Wisconsin - Parkside Madison Hale, University of Wisconsin-Superior
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