Emmanuel Arzate El Paso, TX 27,902 Votes
My great adventure commenced a little more than 23 years ago and ever since I can’t remember a single dull moment in my life. When I was born everything seemed normal, and it continued this way until the age of two when my mom attempted to stand me up and I would fall. Worried, my mom took me to the doctor and that’s when I was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy.
I’ve never seen myself as different from anyone else, and I would like to believe that others don’t see me differently either. In spite of my disability, my positive attitude has helped me face any obstacles that have come before me and I’ve been fortunate to have a solid support system of family and friends.
Despite my struggles I feel that I’ve excelled in life. I’m currently a senior looking to graduate this June from the The University of Texas at El Paso with a bachelors in Marketing and Finance. During college I’ve been widely involved in student organizations and hold leadership roles in which I’ve had the privilege to help on campus, but most importantly give back to my community. I’ve lived my life without knowing limits and constraints, and I would like to believe that I’ve served as motivation to those with or without disabilities.
I’m currently the Vice President of Community Service for the American Marketing Association currently working on AMA Saves Lives where we register our peers for organ donation and promote saving lives. I’ve also been elected twice as a Senator At-Large for the Student Government Association, helping create campus wide initiatives. In my fraternity Delta Sigma Pi I’ve been the team captain for the past 3 years in the Muscular Dystrophy Association Muscle Walk where we’ve raised over $1500. With Lambda Chi Alpha I’ve participated in the North American Food Drive raising canned food and money for the local El Paso Rescue Mission.
Although I have serviced the community in many ways, transportation is a daily challenge for me. I must depend on a public transportation service that has many constraints. If I had a handicap accessible van, my service to the community would be even greater because I would be able to participate in more events. Giving back to the community, motivating and assisting others while demonstrating that there are no limits, makes me feel like I am a local hero.