Escrito por: Dulce Ortiz
Photo by: Alexa Figueroa
Learning how to juggle at UMD’s 2022 Homecoming Celebration was nothing new for Jazmin Escobar, a graduating environmental science and policy senior. As a humble, dedicated, and hardworking student, she’s had to juggle being full-time, as well as being a mother, caregiver, and sister.
Nacida y crecida en Silver Spring, MD, Jazmin, salvadoreña al corazón, es igual de linda y similar a las raíces de su país.
Jazmin is a mother of two daughters, aged 21 mo. and 11 yrs. She’s also a prominent member of her family and is the first to go to college.
Her daughters mean the world to her, and because of them, she decided to pursue her education; for them to have every opportunity.
Within he major’s department, she works in a concentration known best as the Environmental Geosciences & Restoration program.
She chose this major because she loves learning about Earth sciences and wanted to do something where she could enjoy the outdoors, restore it, and make a difference in the community.
To add, she is proud of her work because being Latinx, she states that it’s a major with little Latinx representation. As she puts it best, “I see that we’re here, but in certain concentrations, we just don’t shine through..”
She believes that this field is incredibly unique, adding that “I might not understand it all or be the best at it, but I’ve enjoyed it. I find every topic fascinating.”
In her spare time, she has interned for the Kaushal Biogeochemistry Lab on campus Her daughters mean the world to her, and because of them, she decided to pursue her education; for them to have every opportunity.
Her interest peaks in moments where she’s watching her professors work because she’s “working alongside scientists."
Following her time here, she hopes to work for the Environmental Protection Agency in a position she enjoys and have the opportunity to do something with research, sampling, data, and analysis. Before so, she plans on dedicating time to her family for the remainder of the year.
Overall, Jazmin’s college experience was good, but difficult, considering her current life situation, as well as timing. As a mother, and caretaker for her schizophrenic mother, she says that the mental, as well as physical load, can be tough at times.
“It’s not just like you go to school, you’re a researcher, and you’re all academics. No, I completely switch hats when I'm out of here. I’m a mother, a sister, a daughter.”
She feels like things can go neglected at home, and it’s not a struggle most college students face.
”If you want to do your best on assignments and really retain the information you’re learning, things at home will go neglected, like having to wash the dishes or the kid won’t get a bath tonight. You can’t always have it all” says Jazmin.
Beginning with a rocky upbringing in and out of foster homes, being the daughter of immigrant parents with no previous education, and raising two young girls at her young age, this degree means more than just a piece of paper for her. Es algo que le da razón de seguir luchando y la hace increíblemente orgullosa de sí misma y de su camino.
She’s been extremely humble about her upcoming title. She's not the person to get something, rub it in someone’s face, and say she’s better.
Jazmin’s story is only beginning, and through it all, she shares, “Be proud of yourself. If you have ones you consider loved, share your successes and hope that it carries on and influences whoever you want to influence in the right way.”
"No dejes para mañana lo que se puede ser hoy."
- JAZMIN’S FAMILY