Emilia Saldana is a rising freshman at Tufts University. She was born and raised in Roslindale and lives with her brothers, parents and grandparents. Watching her parents work hard in their communities to advance Latinx education has inspired her to go into public service. Particularly, the work her mom does with Boston Public Schools. The passion she grew up watching her mother exude for education and for people inspired her to follow a similar path. However, instead of education she found that her passion was public health.
Ever since founding a Racial Justice Club in 6th grade with one of her best friends and learning about racial health disparities in her city she has been committed to studying and advancing public health. Beginning in seventh grade she took every opportunity she could at BLS to do exactly this. Her sixie year science fair project was on testing material to create a better menstrual pad. As she got older she joined the BLS GSA and eventually became the president of the club, which taught her about health inequities that the LGBTQ+ Community faces and she discovered a new interest in creating equitable sexual health education for queer students. She was able to put this into action during the Pediatric Community Advocacy Program where her group won first place for their proposal to improve the city of Boston’s sexual health education curriculum.
As a part of the Seevak Fellowship she was able to explore this passion further at Boston GLASS, an organization that serves queer youth of color. She learned how the non profit sector works to serve the city of Boston, differently than what she experienced on the Boston Mayor’s Youth Counil. While on the council she was a part of the Public Health Committee which investigated the accessibility of menstrual products in Boston Public Schools.
She is thrilled to be furthering her experience in government and serve her community as a part of the Office of Governor Maura Healy, especially considering that Maura Healy is the first openly gay governor of MA.