2023 Pioneer Cohort
This is a unique opportunity for me to explore my roots that will help me grow as a leader through a better understanding of the different kinds of perspectives, stories, and communities I will encounter. By understanding where my parents immigrated from, I can maintain my cultural connection and encourage fellow Filipinos my age to do the same. The experience will allow me to personally engage with the community, creating a greater impact on us and in what we can accomplish in the future.
Extracurriculars:Senior President, Filipino Club; Youth Leader, Youth Leadership of Long Beach; Certified Nursing Assistant Intern
Chevy Chase, Maryland
This immersive and unique experience will provide a strong foundation for me and my future goals as a leader. By exploring aspects of my heritage, I will be able to develop my identity and values, enabling me to grow my leadership skills and improve how I lead and collaborate with others.
Extracurriculars:Social Chair, Asian Student Union; International Baccalaureate Wild Cat Award for Academic Excellence; Philippine Embassy Address for Silid-Aralan sa Embahada
Bellerose and New York
Ava Julia Daquial
Learning from textbooks or online can teach you a lot about the Philippines, but learning by actually being in the moment and with nature can change the lens of learning. Whether it may be meeting adolescence my age, or tasting food at local restaurants/ street vendors, this experience can be life changing. As a young leader, I believe everyone should have the opportunity to do and experience the beauty of the Philippines.
Extracurriculars:Opera singer; Events Committee, LAG Her Drive; Music Theory Kids Tutor
An experience of this nature will help me grow as a young leader by providing me with a deeper understanding of my culture and history. I plan to use the knowledge and experience I will gain throughout the program to obtain a deeper connection to other Filipinos and Filipino Americans and help inform younger Filipino Americans within my community about their history and heritage.
Extracurriculars:Project Y Teens; Volunteer, Ellis Square Friends Food for the Needy; National Junior Honor Society
This experience will teach me more about who I am so I can proudly represent my culture and my heritage as a Filipina. Being around peers the same age as me and with similar goals as far as this experience is concerned can be encouraging as we all support each other in our endeavors to learn more about who we are. What I hope to take away from the program is new friendships and memories that I can carry with me upon my return to life here in America.
Extracurriculars:Cambodia Mission Trip, Handa Academy; Student Council Member, Texas Academy; Lion Dance Troupe
Oak Park, Illinois
Understanding one’s heritage and history is key to any sense of self-identity and belonging. It allows me to connect with my ancestors and comprehend the struggles that they may have faced. I can better understand and appreciate the significance of diversity, and this will have a positive impact on my leadership skills. This experience will help me become a more open-minded and inclusive leader, who is better equipped to lead diverse teams and work towards a more just and equitable society.
Extracurriculars:Student Leader, Pan Asian Leadership Society; Girls OPRF Water Polo and Varsity Water Polo and Swim Team; Photographer, Oak Park Yearbook
This experience will help me grow as a young leader by inspiring me to do more things out of my comfort zone. Up until this point in my life, I have never been this far from home and for this amount of time, so the places I will visit and people I meet along the way will all leave a huge impact on who I want to become as a leader and person.
Extracurriculars:Student Leader Captain and Mentor, Bella Cantare of Young Naperville Singers; Award of Excellence, Congress of Future Leaders in Medicine; Volunteer, Stony Point Senior Living Facility
Oak Park, Illinois
The Filipino Young Global Leadership Program will grant me the opportunity to learn more about where I come from while also strengthening my identity as a young Filipina woman along the way. This opportunity to learn about Filipino/Filipino-American history and being fully immersed in my ancestors’ country of origin is an experience that will urge me to self reflect on my identity and leadership role as a Filipino American student.
Excracurriculars:Student Leader, Pan-Asian Leadership Society of Oak Park; Park District Counselor in Training; Cross-country team
Nara Acuña Guba
There are times when I find myself feeling very removed from my Filipino identity, despite being a Filipino citizen. This experience is the perfect opportunity to not only see many different parts of the Philippines but also get to relate my experiences as a Filipino American with others like me. Through the relationships I will form, I hope to lead in building a stronger Filipino American community.
Extracurriculars:Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Acceptance (IDEA) Executive Board; National Arts Honor Society; Junior Varsity: Swimming, Tennis and Volleyball
By fostering a deeper connection with my Filipino ethnic identity through this experience, I will be able to better ensure that others also feel a sense of belonging in the spaces I lead, and promote cultural understanding and awareness as a future educator. With this once-in-a-lifetime experience of a Philippine trip with other invigorated Filipino students, I will connect more to my culture than ever before and learn more about the land of my roots. My biggest dream for the past few years has been to visit the Philippines after my “cultural awakening” and I am so grateful for this opportunity to realize that.
Extracurriculars:Founder and Leader, the Filipino Curriculum Project; Hula Dancer, Hālau Ka Pā Hula O Ka Lei Lehua; Punahou Academy Center Distinction in Global Education and Filipino American National Historical Society [FANHS] Presidential Scholarship
This experience will be the key to unlocking the parts of my heritage I have not had the chance to explore. I want to continue engaging with my Filipino-American community in college, either to start or join a Filipino American club so I can connect with others about Pinoy traditions and culture to those who have not had the privilege of experiencing it. I want to use this experience to create positive change.
Extracurriculars:Iskwelahang Pilipino Rondalla Ensemble Member; Greater Lowell Swim Team Captain; Lowell Folk Festival Volunteer
This experience will help me expand my social awareness to appreciate the value of culture in the community. By understanding my own identity, I will be able to strengthen my confidence as a leader and share what I have learned in this experience with my peers. Through sharing my experience in seeking out this cultural program, I hope to inspire other Filipnx to investigate their heritage and traditions through interaction with external programs such as these.
Extracurriculars:President, Asian Club; Indoor and Beach Volleyball Team Captain and Spartan of the Year; Filipino-American Student Association Club
I was born in the Philippines and I left when I was six years old. I do not know much about the country’s history and my heritage. Though I am proud to be Filipino, I would like to deepen my connection with my home country and learn what I have been missing. An experience of this nature will allow me to gain a deeper understanding of history, identity, and culture and explore my potential as a young leader.
Extracurriculars:Rise Up Ambassador; Health Occupations Students of America; Violinist
Chino Hills, California
Don Xavier Lugatiman
I once heard that history is taught so that we, as people, can understand each other better. I am participating in this program in hopes of doing exactly that. I plan to use the knowledge I gain here to expand my horizons and implement ideals in life to become a better person. I want to use it to be more compassionate towards the previous generation of my family and others I interact with.
Extracurriculars:Senior Patrol Leader, Boy Scouts; Polynesian Club; Volleyball Team
Throughout my life, my primary connection to my Filipino heritage has been through familial and social connections…it’s a completely different experience to learn about a variety of regions through an educational lens. I will grow as a leader through exploring new environments and encountering people who share my heritage while also having different perspectives on our backgrounds. It is valuable to recognize how to listen and connect with others to truly be an effective leader.
Extracurriculars:Iskwelahang Pilipino Leader; Aerialist, Aerial Yoga; Bagong Kulturang Pilipino Volunteer
Through learning the history and experiencing the culture of the Philippines firsthand, I will be able to establish a deeper connection with my Filipino roots and become confident in the identity I discover. That confidence and trust in myself that I gain in this program will hopefully inspire those around me to trust in their own identities and in me as a leader.
Extracurriculars:Special Olympics Unified Partner; High School Swim Team Captain; Dell Client Foundations Award 2022
Heritage is a gateway to understanding oneself and one’s community. My Filipino heritage is very important to me. I feel the need to understand where I came from and what was before me. The program, being centered around Filipino students, history, and culture allows me to embrace this part of myself and my past to engage with others in a positive way. The experience will allow me to grow as a leader and connect me with my fellow program members to establish a community of friendship and support.
Extracurriculars:Student Body President; Top 130 2022 Speech National Tournament Competition; Vice President of Sponsorship, George B. Carter Serteens [Volunteer] Club of Hawaii
As I move on from high school, I want this experience to be a transformative, life changing one through a greater understanding of my culture and my own identity as a Filipino American. I believe that there is no better opportunity to do this than through this program, where I will experience what the Philippines has to offer first hand. With the knowledge and understanding I gain from this trip, I hope to return to the Philippines and serve the people there.
Extracurriculars:Varsity Boys Rowing Co-Captain, Bromfield/Acton-Boxborough Rowing; National Honors Society and President’s Volunteer Service Award; Section Leader, Regional High School Concert Band
I was born here in America, and although my mother was born and raised in the Philippines, I have never had a chance to go and visit the country. Learning more about my ancestry and history will be a way for me to be in touch with my roots. This experience will strengthen my leadership qualities by allowing me to self-reflect and understand my identity and heritage.
Extracurriculars:Student Council Representative; School National Robotics Team; National Chinese Honors Society
I believe that attaining a strong sense of self through uncovering cultural identity is a crucial step in making a substantial impact on the world. Being a part of the Filipino Young Global Leadership Program helps me achieve this by revealing more aspects of my Filipino culture through meaningful lessons, engaging activities, and genuine community bonding, driving me to become a dynamic leader in the future who is willing to make a change in any kind of community.
Extracurriculars:1st Degree Black Belt, Kung Fu – Needham Martial Arts; Fundraiser and Volunteer, Gawad Kalinga Boston; President & Principal Award Scholar and Headmasters Circle Award