2021-22 Southeast Youth of the Year
Jorge has already begun his political career. It started at his Boys & Girls Club, where mentors encouraged him to go after his ambitions, including leading the Club’s Youth Council. “I hope to create equitable opportunities for my peers,” he says. “Youth Council grants me the tools to fight for minorities, like myself, under an inequitable education system.”
Emigrating from Cuba to Sarasota when he was 7 years old, Jorge struggled with self-confidence as he adapted to life in the United States. As he tried to assimilate to expected norms at school and navigate the challenges of being a non-native English speaker, opportunities often felt closed to him. Jorge is committed to changing inequities young people encounter, especially in school.
Using opportunities and skills gleaned from his Club experience, Jorge actively advocates on behalf of youth education to local businesses as well as county and state governments. He sits on the Florida Department of Education’s Student Voices Commission, representing the Boys & Girls Clubs’ Florida Alliance. Says Jorge, “I am determined to create a future where no student is forgotten.”