Please enjoy our series focusing on COTC student leaders. Stay tuned for more in-depth stories about their other activities at COTC and in the community.
Gabriella came to COTC after a recommendation from her brother, a COTC alumnus. Her brother told her how much he enjoyed the campus, the classes and teachers. She spent a few years out in the workforce but realized that her long-term goals required a degree.
"I figured out that I needed to know how to open businesses," she said. Gabriella has several different altruistic plans to help veterans, the homeless and single mothers with the skills she learns earning her Associate of Technical Studies in business management and digital media design.
"I've got one life to live and feel I should do something with it," said Gabriella. "I want to buy land in Colorado for an orchard to feed the homeless and to build tiny homes for veterans. I'm also going to teach digital media design skills to single moms so that they can bring in money."
Her pursuit of self-employment has limited her time available to be involved on campus. She has spent the past three years planning and renovating her Econoline e150 van into a living space and starting a hemp jewelry business.
Gabriella's long-term plans pushed her to seek opportunities to make connections to people with similar goals. Being chosen to represent COTC at the 2016 Propel Ohio Leadership Summit is a great honor for her.
"I was a little nervous, but more excited. It gave me a little experience and knowledge to take with me later on," she said.
Propel Ohio is a leadership program launched in 2015 that promotes civic engagement and inspires undergraduate students to grow into civic leaders. The goal of the program is to actively engage with college students on issues that affect childhood poverty, including health and hunger, education and education security.