Scholar Spotlight: Anthony Arellano
Junior at Iowa State University
“Being a Bright Scholar means that I am surrounded by a group of people who all have a similar mindset and goals. We are not only here to succeed for ourselves, but we also hope to one day be able to give back to our communities and to others in need. Each Bright Scholar has the drive to want to do better in this world and impact others.”
What opportunities or experiences have you been able to take part in that you might not have been able to without the scholarship?
Thanks to the Bright Foundation, I have been able to experience what higher education is. I’m from a big family, which makes it challenging to attend a university. I am very appreciative of the Bright Foundation for giving me an opportunity to improve not only my future, but my family’s as well.
How are you sharing your time and/or talents with others now? How do you hope to do so in the future?
I have been sharing my time and talents with others through my involvement in student organizations. I currently serve as the treasurer of Latinx Student Initiatives, which promotes Latinx leadership and unites the Latinx community on campus. As a first-generation college student, it can be difficult to find connections. Through my involvement in this organization, I hope to make college more enjoyable for other multicultural students and get more students involved and connected to others on campus.
What is your favorite class and why?
My favorite class so far has been Pol Sci 344, Public Policy. After taking this class, I’ve become more interested in the policy aspect of political science. I especially enjoyed learning about how a bill progresses from an idea/concept through the political “black box” and how outside forces, such as voters and interest groups, play a huge role in the political system.
Who is your biggest inspiration and why?
My father is my biggest inspiration. He pushes me to my limits in everything I do. If it was not for my father, not only would I not be here at college, I also would not be the person I am today. Since I can remember, he has instilled in me a great work ethic. My father is the definition of not giving up when life gets hard. I’ve learned from him to use life’s difficulties as opportunities to grow, as hardships make all of life’s other accomplishments greater.
What is something important you’ve learned outside of class since you’ve started college?
I’ve learned that asking for help with classes is completely normal and expected. I used to think that asking for help was a sign that I wasn’t smart enough to be here. Now I understand that college is supposed to be challenging, and everyone needs a little extra guidance at times. I wish I would have known this my freshman year.