Meet the 2011 Point Scholars
BY Advocate.com Editors
June 08 2011 2:30 AM ET
- from Knoxville, Tenn.
- pursuing an MA in counseling psychology at California Institute of Integral Studies
- Point Honors Los Angeles Point Scholarship
How do you feel your Point Scholarship will change or help your future?
Like too many young folks in this country, I'm still working off debt from my previous education. Knowing that earning my MA would more than triple my debt dampened some of my excitement about my studies. Support from Point Foundation will dramatically reduce my overall debt and plug me into a community of service and mentorship, and that makes my future look a whole lot brighter. When I finish my degree, I won't have to work for some agency that doesn't care about me or the people it serves just to make ends meet; instead, I'll invest my labor in social entrepreneurship and projects I believe in, along with the support of this creative community.
In conjunction with Point, how do you wish to make difference in the LGBT community?
In my experience working toward LGBTQ equality at both the nonprofit and the grassroots level, the greatest challenge to our progress is figuring out how to support each other and work together across our differences. I want to dig in and be part of the solution, so I'm back in school to be a therapist. Counseling and community organizing are very similar kinds of work, and my intent is the same in both - to empower myself and others to greater confidence, to rise up against shame, and to take direct action on the circumstances in our lives that hold us down. My training as a therapist will make me a better organizer and group facilitator as well. In conjunction with Point, I hope to continue opening space for new ideas and leadership in the movement for equality, to provide more emotional support for young queer folks facing homophobia in their families and communities, and to support young social entrepreneurs to sustain their motivation and passion through the challenges of implementing new ideas.