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Fellowships Give Hispanic Youth a Chance for Jobs

“I wasn’t sure going in from the clinical realm to the policy realm ... if any of the skills I had would translate or if I would be really lost,” he said. He credited CHCI mentors with encouraging him to volunteer at a clinic in the District to keep his skills up.

Ultimately, he found a place where his education and experience were useful. In the latter half of his fellowship he helped the Office of HIV/AIDS Policy translate its new Web site, AIDS.gov, from clinical language to language any reader can understand. Through that experience he met a variety of people working on AIDS-related issues at other federal agencies, as well. Since his fellowship ended in May, he has continued working for the agency as a consultant.

New fellows descended upon the District in August, and Karla Acevedo is looking forward to working with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus as part of her fellowship. A 2008 graduate of Boston College, Acevedo, 23, spent her first year out of college teaching high school students about social responsibility as an employee of the Boston Center for Community and Justice.

“The type of work I’ve been doing has been around diversity, so I have focused on Latino leaders and I’m very interested to see what Latino leaders are doing at the national level,” she said.

In that sense, Acevedo has come full circle, from student to teacher to student again.

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