Yalitza is a double Tar Heel, having earned from UNC a Masters in Social Work and a B.A. in Psychology and Spanish. Between studies, Yalitza has worked for Carolina on local, statewide, and global projects in the areas of program evaluation, early childhood education, high-quality instruction, educational access, asset development, and financial empowerment. For over a decade, she volunteered in the community with organizations in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro area. Postgraduate studies, Yalitza was at Durham’s Partnership for Children working to ensure high-quality standards, build strong partnerships within communities, and engage families and communities in leadership and advocacy.
Currently, Yalitza supports students of diverse experiences, identities, needs, and academic disciplines who serve on the Campus Y executive board, cabinet, programs, and over 30 student-led committees engaging in direct service, advocacy, and innovative social change efforts. Yalitza lives in Durham with her partner and two children.
How do you identify yourself?
I identify as an African American and Puerto Rican cis-gender female. A northerner and southerner. I identify as someone who has experienced poverty and housing insecurity throughout my childhood and college experience. I am a caregiver and spiritual person. I come from a big, loving family and community full of pride and a commitment to take care of each other.
List three things that people would be most surprised to learn about you.
- I played 3 instruments.
- I grew up doing West African and Bomba dancing, and stepping.
- I love Drama (club)
Whom do you admire and why?
I admire my mother for not only teaching me but showing me compassion, tolerance, optimism, empathy, patience, wisdom, determination, drive, creativity, resilience, and love.