When I joined JUNTOS and went to Oaxaca, Mexico in 2019, I had no idea how impactful the trip would be. The week in Oaxaca dancing and performing for communities around the city changed the way I view concert dance and teamwork, and forced me far outside my comfort zone. I firmly believe that I would not be the dancer, student, or coworker I am today if it was not for those nine days in Oaxaca. A year and a half later, I carry with pride the JUNTOS mission to cultivate unity through dance. While on my journey as a JUNTOS Ambassador I am so grateful for everyone who has supported me, whether it be through mentoring, guidance, financial support, or emotional support. So first of all, thank you thank you thank you!
In early March with the reality of COVId-19 setting in, my fellow Ambassadors and I found our projects on-hold indefinitely. The organization I was supposed to work with in New York City had to cancel their in-person summer programing, and many ideas were bounced around. Should we hold Zoom dance classes? Will I be able to teach in the fall? What if students (rightfully so) feel uncomfortable dancing on screen? How do we teach dance technique without in person connection, especially when everyone has about 5 square feet of space to dance in. As every aspect of our daily life is called into question, it often feels that more questions are being asked than answered. I am inspired and in awe of the resilience my teammates have displayed in the face of all this change. Amy, our leader, helped us find backup plans almost immediately, and no one missed a beat in figuring out how we can reach our goals in a rapidly changing world.