When Sandy Guido left Honduras at 18-years-old in 2008 to live in New York, she immediately knew that in order to succeed in the United States that she had to pursue higher education. She chose Hostos Community College to obtain a degree in social working.
I started taking classes at Hostos Community College…I got my GED…and I chose social working because the people here helped to get to the path of going to college and I would like to do the same for people that don’t know how the system works here. Sometimes you don’t know the opportunities that you have until you learn the process.”
More importantly, she knew from her own experience as an immigrant in a new country what that meant to her.
“You are able to help people that really need your help,” said Guido.
Growing up, she knew that neither of her parents attained the level of education that they needed to get a better job in Honduras or the United States. In her native country, her mother was a housekeeper and her father was a community leader. Together, both her parents work as factory workers building revolving doors.
Guido knew that she wanted more and that with a college education that she would obtain a better job. First, she went to HCC for her GED and ESL courses. Once she finished that she pursued her Associate’s Degree in Liberal Arts. Currently, she is on track to receiving her Bachelor’s Degree at Lehman College in June 2017, something that she believes she wouldn’t have been able to do without the help that she received from the social workers at HCC that helped her.
I like to study because I will be the first in my family to get a Bachelor’s Degree. It makes me feel proud of myself and that I’m making my family feel proud of me.”
Not wanting to stop there, Guido also has plans to follow up her bachelor’s with another.
“Seeing myself almost finishing my bachelor’s made me realize that I can go to higher level. I will continue to go and then get my master’s…I am doing this for myself. This is an accomplishment for me.”
Guido only hopes that her story will be an inspiration for others.
If you want to get the best opportunities you have to work hard to get to the level that you want. For example, if you come here and want a better job you have to get a better education, start from the beginning. I didn’t think that I will be getting my bachelor’s, but I started from the beginning with English classes to get to where I want to be. It will take time and little by little you can do what you want in life. It’s not easy, but you will get it.”