Rosangela has always had a strong passion for higher education. However, even after receiving two Master’s Degrees from the University of Nevada, Reno, and California State University, Fullerton, she realized she was never taught by a Latina professor. For her, it became a personal goal to diversify academia and break down the stereotype that Latinos are not interested in STEM-related fields. A survey conducted in 2022 by PEW Research Center demonstrated that while Latinos make up 17 percent of the workforce in the United States, only 8 percent of Latinos serve in STEM jobs.
While attending the University of Nevada, Rosangela Carreon first heard about the MANO Project and decided to apply to a summer internship opportunity with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). At the time, she was a Master’s student focused on the effects climate change had on hydrological efforts in Nicaragua. .
She landed a position with the BLM as a Natural Resource Specialist in the Nevada state office. Prior to beginning her internship, the MANO Project team hosted an orientation for eight interns from across the country that were set to begin their internships with BLM and the U.S. Forest Service to network, learn from each other, and bond. After forming a connection with her peers, she was able to lean on them for support during her internship.
Within the twelve weeks of her internship, Rosangela found herself taking field trips to different types of mining sites, both active or abandoned. During the field trips, she saw the aftermath of acid mine raining, documented it through pictures, and took the research back to the local office. She found herself exploring barren land with small towns in between to monitor the work of the state office.
“The field trips were a learning experience where I could incorporate what I had learned in school and apply it to real life situations within the state of Nevada. It offered a different kind of educational opportunity that was more hands-on.”
After her summer internship with the Bureau of Land Management, Rosangela decided to pursue a career within the city level of government to stay local. She now serves as a Geographic Information Systems Technician for the city of Pomona.
“The MANO Project paved a path in my career by showing me that people of color do serve in government jobs within local, state, and federal agencies,” said Rosangela “It helped me understand there are different paths and opportunities for me. I was more inclined to apply to government-related jobs now more than ever before.”
To learn more about the MANO Project and to see what positions are currently available, visit https://manoproject.org/.