Briana Urbina learned the value of education from her parents. They both grew up in poverty in New York City, but were able to use education to change their lives. It was her parents’ stories that made her appreciate the opportunities that she had that so many of her family members did not.
But when she moved to DC, Briana wasn’t sure how to navigate the waters. As a woman of color and a queer woman, she had very different experiences than some of her white peers.
“Coming from New York City, I didn’t understand that there was a world where everyone was white and rich. Even though there is economic inequality in New York, it doesn’t feel as black and white as in DC. As a person of color moving here, I felt like the ‘how do I get myself in the door’ system wasn’t designed for my success.”
Briana accepted a fellowship through LEE and began to build the confidence that her story has value. She brings that value everywhere she goes.
“Participating in LEE programming gave me the opportunity to have a seat at the table to share my experience. There were no other outspoken queer voices in the room. I was able to become a voice that wouldn’t otherwise have been there.”
If you’re ready to leverage your identity and experience as an LGBTQIA+ person of color to find a role that will position you to create more equitable systems and policies for students and communities, apply for the LGBTQIA+ DPLS program.
Explore the intersection of your identity to better understand how your experiences and values have paved the way for you to be a coalition builder in your community. Join this three-day workshop August 3–5 in New York City, and work alongside other LGBTQIA+ leaders of color to contribute toward dismantling white supremacy, heterosexism, transphobia, and gender injustice at large.