Scholar Spotlight: Monica Orozco

Uplift North Hills scholar, Monica Orozco has made many accomplishment this summer starting with developing her nonprofit Gift of Reading. Gift of Reading is a nonprofit that promotes servant leadership, literacy and a love of reading through book ownership.

Monica, 7th grader, has been working towards her goal of becoming an entrepreneur for seven years now. She started with a gesture of kindness that turned into an idea of change. She was inspired by listening to NPR on a car ride home, when she learned that 60% of kids do not have a single book in their home.

“At first I was shocked because I have a ton of books in my home and I couldn’t bear the thought of somebody living without any form of literature in their home,” said Monica.

Monica3rdGradeShe decided she wanted to gift a book to her classmates to encourage them to read and continue growing their home library. As she continued to do this every year, she was inspired to see it grow into something more.

“I took a year off and did research on sustainability and scalability to see what it looked like, then I implemented it into my program,” said Monica.

She then joined Cause Studio where she learned how to successfully develop a nonprofit. By working hard and taking the initiative to learn every step of the way, Monica had the opportunity to participate in Mega Fest this summer where she pitched her nonprofit to five judges in a middle school category. She won first place along with $15,000 to help her continue her growth. This fueled her to continue to pursue building out her nonprofit.

To finish off the summer, Monica participated in  One Million Cups at the Dallas

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Entrepreneurship Center where she pitched her nonprofit once again in hopes of finding partnerships and sponsors who can help grow the Gift of Reading. She was also approved to participate in North Texas Giving Day this year.

As school begins Monica’s focus turns to academics as she aspires to attend an Ivy League university after high school and major in business with a concentration in social entrepreneurship. She has a bright future and big goals for Gift of Reading.

“My goal by the time I get to 12th grade is for this program to be expanded across North Texas in ISDs and charter schools,” said Monica.

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