I want everybody to understand there’s a way to obtain higher education even if you think you have no avenues to better yourself.
Acknowledging the road to earn his associate degree was unconventional, Angel Garcia views life after graduation with excitement, confidence and courage. He credits North Shore Community College as that special place where “I can walk through the front door today, know nothing, and be put on a path to self-actualize what I never thought possible.”
As an adult learner, Angel approached enrolling in college with the clear goal to achieve his full potential as a student and take advantage of every resource and opportunity available to him at NSCC. Thanks to his leadership and participation in the Student Government Association, in a short time, Angel also became an advocate to other NSCC students and continues to share his voice at the institution’s highest levels, including serving as the College’s 2022-23 Student Trustee.
Angel’s academics, opportunities, participation, and goals all culminated with a recent trip to Washington, DC, where he accompanied the College’s Board of Trustees to meet the nation’s leaders, including Senators Edward Markey and Elizabeth Warren, and Congressman Seth Moulton. But what stood out among his experiences was his instant connection and shared vision with students at nearby Howard University, the globally recognized, historically Black research university.
“It galvanized my goals because we live in a great country and we need to look more at what our collective needs are, how we get back to public service rather than cultural war, and all those things that divide us. It reaffirmed everything for me.”
A coach with the soul of a teacher
But Angel wants to pay forward, too. As a youth-level football coach in Lynn, MA, he also recognizes the opportunity to serve as a mentor, an advocate, and a strong role model for young men growing up in the community Angel calls home.
Angel’s deep motivation for civic engagement is driven by the life and work of Frederick Douglass, one of primary architects of the nation’s abolitionist movement and Black suffrage. Angel considers Douglass a modern hero, emphasizing that no other literary work has meant more to him — it instantly focused his vision on how far Angel could aim his sites.
“The point of knowledge is to pass it on and to pick up those that are standing behind you. Knowledge lets you level up. I envision myself to be a teacher in the Lynn public schools and give back to my community – it’s part who I am.”
The future is now
In September 2023, Angel Garcia will continue his journey at Salem State University where he has been accepted into the Education program.
“I see myself being exactly where I am — supporting those that don't have support, and advocating for those that can't speak for themselves. And passing knowledge on, to enlighten the next generation. I want to always be that source of positivity and I see myself in a classroom, teaching, sharing knowledge, and continuing the work of great men like Frederick Douglass.”
2023 AA, LIBERAL ARTS TRANSFER/HISTORY PATHWAY