You heard earlier in the story about Julissa’s passion for helping people. Although Julissa has a full time job, she still finds time to give back to her local community in the form of mentorship. She told us, “I think we all want to find people who believe in us and value what we have to offer. I am learning through mentorship and coaching to talk less and ask more questions. I am mainly focused on mentorship with young Hispanic women at my alma mater, Rutgers University.” She continued, “I am a first-generation college student who overcame a lot to get my degree and I’m proud to be a person that others look to and say, ‘Hey, she looks like me. If she can do it, so can I.” Today, Julissa has created a first of its’ kind scholarship for Hispanic women at Rutgers University, the Latina Leadership Potential Award. “ I am proud of this scholarship, and more importantly, of the recipients over the past 10+ years who have gone on to do great things in their own lives and careers. It has allowed me stay connected to the university while making an impact for the next generation of Latina leaders,” she said.
As you can tell, Julissa lives quite a busy life. However, she still finds time for her own wellbeing. “I have always loved gardening. I grew up loving gardening, flowers, and plants because my mom loved it as well. However, when the pandemic hit, we couldn’t go out and buy plants or flowers to garden with so we had to figure out an alternative. I was on YouTube one day and watched a video on propagating, which is the practice of growing plants by cutting stems, gathering some roots, and replanting them. It is such an economical way to garden,” she said. This allows Julissa to take her mind off of work for a bit and get fresh air. “In our line of work we do a lot of strategy, planning, and problem solving. We think about metrics and creative ways to solve things. This is something completely different and I love getting my hands dirty. Between calls I water my plants and watch them grow. Often, I get the best ideas for my job by doing other things away from the computer and phone,” she told us.