Pamela began her Penn journey as an Economics major in the College of Arts and Sciences. Through her curiosity and interest, she discovered a class taught by Dr. Emilio A. Parrdo, called “Latinos in the United States,” which focuses on the economic and sociological aspects of Latino immigration. Inspired by this class, Pamela decided to change her major to Latin American and Latino Studies. She was already innately interested in Latinx culture and experiences across the nation, as well as pursing related research. This course brought together many of Pamela’s interests in an exciting intersection.
The College of Arts & Sciences is the heart of all the Penn programs. Spanning more than 50 majors and 2,000+ courses, the College offers a unique take on the classic liberal arts education.
Having the flexibility to pursue individual research was a priority for Pamela. So, when the opportunity presented itself in her “Feminism in the Americas” class, she decided to research the role of Mexican American women in the feminist movement and feminism more broadly on the West Coast. Through her research, she discovered that during El Movimiento, the Chicano civil rights movement of the 1960s, feminists succeeded in fighting for more awareness for Chicano people and simultaneously challenged the male dominated voice within the movement.
Penn is one of the nation's top research universities, not only generating important new knowledge in the fields of medicine, technology, business, science, and beyond, but applying this knowledge to improve the lives of individuals and communities at home and around the world.
Pamela wanted to make a difference in her Philadelphia community, so she decided to dedicate time tutoring students at KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) Dubois Collegiate Academy, a free open enrollment college preparatory school in West Philadelphia. Having attended a KIPP school in Houston, Pamela found that volunteering her time with Philadelphia KIPP students was a meaningful way to make an impact. In addition to this volunteer work, Pamela also spent time in South and North Philadelphia, working with Voto Latino, a national civic media organization, encouraging Philadelphians to register and vote. Due to this effort more than 50 people registered to vote.
A leader both on and off campus, Pamela is the co-chair of Penn for Immigrant Rights, an organization dedicated to opening up dialogue about undocumented immigrants and immigration in general. As a DACA recipient herself, Pamela is passionate about this mission to educate and dismantle misconceptions about immigration.
At Penn, she feels empowered, supported, and listened to by her home away from home, the Greenfield Intercultural Center (GIC), where she is a member of the First-Generation Low-Income (FGLI) program and a work-study student. GIC’s mission is a center that’s mission is to enhance student’s intercultural knowledge, competency, and leadership through programs, advising, and advocacy.
To prepare today’s students for their lives after graduation, Penn admits and fosters a community vibrant with a breadth of experience across cultural identity, academic interest, religious belief, sexual orientation, extracurricular interest, regional affiliation, national origin, and more. Read more about Penn's diverse community.