Rosanna Munoz (Steinhardt ’25) had limited guidance when applying to college and registering for classes. “I was trying to explain it all to my mother, and as much as she tried to hear me out and to help me, she didn't fully understand the process,” recalls Rosanna, a first-generation college student. “That’s when I realized that I had to learn how to be more independent.”
Rosanna drew on that newfound resolve to say yes to new challenges, starting a job as a dental assistant and joining NYU’s Student Alumni Council during her first year. The following year she joined Women of Excellence, Strength, and Tenacity (WEST)—a student group that aims to support and empower undergraduate women of color through leadership and community service events—as the social media chair.
While adjusting to a busy schedule, Rosanna began yoga classes to “unwind while I reflected on my achievements, identified areas for growth, and established goals for the upcoming week.”
She switched her major from teaching and learning to applied psychology with the goal of becoming a high school counselor who could offer the kind of guidance she had longed for as a student.
“Now that I'm taking more applied psych classes, I know that there's more things to it than just advising,” Rosanna reflects. “My long-term goal is to pursue graduate school and specialize as a child life specialist. The beauty of psychology is that it offers diverse avenues for me to explore and utilize my skills, and I am excited to embrace the possibilities that the future holds for me.”
Rosanna has continued to grow in her extracurricular roles too. In her dental assistant position, she is now training and mentoring new employees and helping the dentist during complex procedures.
In the Fall 2023 semester, Rosanna will start off her junior year studying abroad in Abu Dhabi, where she will work as a research assistant with an organization focused on developing programs for mothers and their children.
“This is a topic that I truly care about because I come from a single-parent household,” she says. “And this research opportunity will help me build skills I can use in my career. I’m looking forward to leaving an impact at NYU Abu Dhabi, and learning and growing from those experiences, just like I’ve grown from being a student at NYU in New York.”