Freshman Genesis Rivera experienced her formative years at a low-income Black and Brown elementary school in Chicago. From a young age, she noticed her peers lose their passion for education after experiencing the traumas of family and friends falling victim to gun violence and incarceration. Genesis is determined to break this vicious cycle with the best tool she knows — teaching. "I want to be able to tell my students that education and knowledge is powerful." She says, "It’s the key to our liberation and will help us give back to our communities. My students will not be another statistic."
A little bit about Genesis
Q: Where is home for you?
A: I'm from Chicago, Illinois, I attended Whitney Young High School.
Q: What is your year and major?
A: I'm a freshman in Middle Grades Education.
Q: Why did you choose Illinois?
A: I student taught my senior year of high school and was able to meet educators and student teachers that attend or attended U of I. I was able to see their knowledge and passion shine through their teaching and observe how well the university prepared them for them for their career in education.
Q: How did you know you wanted to go into the field of education?
A: Coming from a low-income Black and Brown elementary school, I saw students lose their passion in school after seeing friends and family shot or incarcerated. I want to be able to tell my students that education and knowledge is powerful. It’s the key to our liberation and will help us give back to our communities. My students will not be another statistic.
Q: What are you looking forward to most in college?
A: I’m super excited for Illinois Men’s Basketball games and for more days of picnics on the Quad!
Q: What is your dream job?
A: To be a Middle School Language Arts Teacher.
Q: What is a fun fact about yourself?
A: I love fashion!
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