Valerie Rodriguez was raised in the San Gabriel Valley in the City of El Monte, California. Her parents immigrated to the United States from Guadalajara, Jalisco, and she is proud to be a first-generation Latina and a daughter of immigrants. Growing up, her family instilled in her the importance of obtaining a higher education degree, and though her parents could not speak English, they always strived to support and motivate her for a better tomorrow. Her background and family’s history has made her passionate about working toward the collective and individual well-being of community members, especially those of low income and people of color.
After graduating high school, she attended community college, and two years after transferred to California State University, Long Beach. In her time at CSU Long Beach, Valerie’s passion for public policy grew as she formed part different leadership and internship programs. She first participated in Hispanas Organized for Political Equality’s (HOPE) College Leadership Program where she began to develop her leadership and professional skills, and as a result enjoys volunteering with HOPE. Shortly after, Valerie was involved in the Sacramento Semester Program and the Campaign’s Student Leadership Institute. During this time, she realized her eagerness to advocate for the success of underserved communities. After applying and landing a role at the Campaign, she feels very lucky to work in a space that positively impacts racial equity and social justice high education driven policies.
Valerie holds an Associate’s degree from Rio Hondo College and a Bachelor of Arts from California State University, Long Beach, both in Political Science.
Why I Do What I Do: “Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn’t be that women are the exception.” -RBG
Alma Mater(s): Rio Hondo College, California State University, Long Beach
Your role in one sentence: Supporting the policy team in Sacramento by performing various administration and policy related tasks.
When I am not at work helping students get to and succeed in college I am… doing some form of self-care, binge watching Netflix, spending time with friends, or on FaceTime with my family
If not higher education then what cause? Immigration reform or helping families buy their dream home