Uplift Williams Preparatory was fortunate to have Dolores Alcala as a scholar, and even luckier to have her back as an Road To College team member. Alcala’s journey started when she transferred from Bishop Dunne to Uplift Williams her sophomore year. She credited Uplift Williams for having a warm and open environment that allowed her to cultivate relationships with the faculty unlike any school she attended before. But no relationships were more valuable to her than those she made within the RTC department.
“Before coming to Williams, I didn’t even know what college was. I had no idea until my sophomore year of high school,” said Alcala.
Like many of scholars, Alcala was a first-generation college student and the RTC team at Uplift Williams worked tirelessly with her to help her fine tune her essays and ensure she was able to find her best fit college. RTC also put together alumni events to bring Uplift Williams alumni back to speak to the current scholars and give them their college experience firsthand.
“It was encouraging to see my peers come back and talk about how well Uplift Williams prepared them and how college wasn’t as scary as they thought it may be,” said Alcala.
Once she graduated from Uplift Williams, she went on to attend Salem College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where she graduated with a Communications degree with honors.
She returned to her alma mater to work as an alumni counselor and says that it was an easy choice to come back because she only wants to give the scholars the same opportunities she was awarded. She also had a large part in generating a large turnout for the alumni panel Uplift Williams hosted before the winter break. Thirty alumni returned to the school in order to talk to this year’s juniors and seniors about their upcoming college journey. Alcala said seeing the alumni come back and reconnect as well as seeing the scholars interact with their older peers really made her feel like she was called to her work. She recalled it being much easier to relate to the alumni who came back than the teachers who talked to her about college, and if she can help just one scholar, like they helped her, she knows she made the right decision.