Our Future Workforce: Aline Irafasha

June 3, 2019



Aline’s Genesys Works Story

Aline was born and raised in a Congolese refugee camp in Rwanda. When, at 17 years old, she and her family moved to Houston, Aline adapted rapidly. She started at Wisdom High School and quickly learned English, but wasn’t quite sure how to reach her goals of going to college and starting a career. “After living in a refugee camp for 17 years, I had never worked anywhere before and had no idea about jobs or internships in America,” Aline said. “Although I knew I wanted to go to college, I was afraid that I might never be able to get into or pay for a college of my choice.”

After some research, Aline decided to apply to Genesys Works to help her manage her senior year and reach her college and career goals. She said, “After talking to a few Genesys Works alumni and watching some testimonial videos, I was so inspired. I started dreaming of what it would feel like to be in a professional workplace.”

In the summer of 2018, Aline began Genesys Works summer skills training. Though she had no prior experience working on computers, she chose to train in IT. “I thought I would fall behind and not be able to figure out the material,” Aline said. “But it was nothing like that. The technical training was full of hands-on activities. I understood everything I was learning and did great on my assessments.” Aline did so well, in fact, that at the end of the summer she earned an internship with Texas Children’s Hospital in the Texas Medical Center.

At her internship, Aline was able to use the technical and professional skills she learned during summer skills training, like Microsoft Excel and professional communication. Learning how to communicate in a corporate setting allowed Aline to form great relationships at the hospital. “My coworkers were always happy to not only teach me new things, but also gave me advice about college and life after school,” she said. “We had mentors who were always looking out for us to make sure we were learning as much as possible.”

Aline’s internship in the medical field helped to inform her plans to study Public Health or Biochemistry. Her goal is to become a medical doctor, so that she can “offer healthcare to those who struggle every day to sustain a family and do not have much access to healthcare.” Aline credits Genesys Works with helping her plan and reach her goals, and knows that GW will be here to support her throughout college- even from afar. She said, “I never thought any of this could be possible, but joining Genesys Works has changed my life forever. I am so grateful to know that I will be well taken care of during and after my college years.”

In the fall, Aline will head to the east coast to attend Wellesley College. Not only will Aline have the Genesys Works alumni team to support her throughout her undergraduate studies, but she will also have all of the resources that come with a Posse Scholarship. After summer skills training, Aline was nominated by her Genesys Works summer program coordinator, Jasmine, for the Posse program, and ultimately selected as a recipient. Additionally, she was the recipient of the Dell Scholarship and the Beat the Odds Scholarship. To be selected for one of these scholarship awards is an honor. To win all three is a testament to the hard work, perseverance, and grit Aline has shown since immigrating to the U.S. and before.

When asked what Aline wanted people to know about Genesys Works, she replied “Genesys Works changes young people’s lives, especially those who come from underserved communities.  I never thought I could be where I am today, but they made sure I had all the resources I needed to create a successful future. Genesys Works does not look for who you are but who you can become.”

At Genesys Works, we are blown away by our interns as they are. It is our privilege to get to see who they will become and where they will go. We are proud to know that young people, like Aline, are the future of America’s workforce.

When you make a gift to Genesys Works, you’re helping Houston-area young people, like Aline, reach their college and career goals. Make an impact today.

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