Friday, April 16, 2010

Words shared from a graduating senior at last night's annual campaign event

Hi, my name is Emely Barroso. I am a senior at Feinstein High School and have been coming to New Urban Arts for four years. Throughout these four years, I’ve been involved with their comics, watercolor and self-publishing programs, and have participated in their summer program for two years. My passions are storytelling, sequential arts, and painting. Last year, I started a Zine Team at my high school and last Saturday, with New Urban Arts, organized a city-wide Zine Fair here in the studio. I am graduating this June and am planning on going to college to pursue a degree in visual arts or illustration.

Before I stepped through the doors of New Urban Arts, I was always the type of person who apologized frequently (sometimes unnecessarily too). Maybe it’s because I was also the type of person who didn’t like the person they were; someone who didn’t think others liked that person either; someone who felt just their presence was a burden to be around.

So when did it all change? When did I stop hanging my head down in shame and holding it up with pride and self-worth? When did I stop being afraid of being around others and start feeling comfortable around them? When did “maybe you shouldn’t” get replaced with “you totally should”?

When did others around me stop saying “you shouldn’t apologize so much” or “stop being so sorry; it’s ok” and start saying “wow, that’s great! You should totally go for that” and “I’m so happy for you, Em”?

All of that changed because of New Urban Arts.

Walking in that first day with my little yellow folder of drawings, I was petrified to no end at what the people would be like, and ultimately shocked at how nice and welcoming Sarah M., the first person I met here, was and is. So through New Urban Arts, I feel like a lot has changed. I’ve changed.

It feels like all those sob stories I used to peddle have become a love story with New Urban Arts; like my whole life, I’ve been watching an underdog story and it feels like now, I’m really rooting for a hero.

Through this place, this amazing wonderful place, my sorry’s became thank yous.
Thank you’s for the mentors and the students. Thank you’s for the memories and the friends I’ve made here.

Thanks for making my high school experience something worth telling. Thank you for being patient and giving me the room to become who I am today. Thank you for giving me a future I’m really excited about. Thank you for letting me thank you and for being here day after day.

Thank you, NUA.

Thank you.


Post a Comment

<< Home