GSP Student Stories

Marcelo Elliot-Lopez

Marcelo Elliot-Lopez

Fall 2020 graduate
B.A. Sociology
B.A. Chicana/Chicano Studies

Why did you choose UC Davis?

Because it was a well-respected UC school. I never imagined going to college, much less a UC, and I was unsure where to go. I applied as a back up to UC Berkeley. I got into every school I applied to except for Berkeley and even though I was heartbroken, in the end, going to UC Davis was one of the best initially unplanned choices of my life.

What activities did you engage in while at UC DAVIS?

Too many to count, lol... I have been an EOP Peer Advising Counselor & Coordinator, I have been a Whole Earth Festival Program Director, Member of the Chancellor's Advisory Board, Student Advisory Board for Dean of Undergraduate Education, OWL's (Older Wiser Learners) President and community outreach person, Student Parent Advisory board, CYC (California Youth Connection) Supporter volunteer, Research Assistant, Beyond the Barriers board member, STEP (Special Transition Enrichment Program) Coordinator, GSP Mentor, Guardian Scholar, BTS (Beyond the Stats) Seminar Facilitator & club facilitator, Art & Lectures Committee member, Star Trek Club Member, Yolo County Neighborhood Court Program, KHOP Pre-Law Program, OEOES Research Fellow, Sociology -Honors Thesis Research Group, La Raza Pre-Law Club Member, and several other great experiences at UC Davis.

What part of GSP was most helpful to you?

The people and friends I have made along the way and their support of everyone involved with GSP made the journey something special, from Valeri, to Michelle, to Sonia, to Lilly, and all other students and other faculty involved with our group... so many

What is your favorite GSP event that you attended?

I think the STEP GSP Students and first GEN event, watching GSP students share during open mic that promoted many of us GSP students.

Message to other GSP students:

Sometimes we forget how important creating family and community can be because we all have had to do well on our own for so long that we may resign to taking on monumental journeys alone, or we have had to learn to handle so much in our own way that we sometimes fail to consider that we are

connected to others through these many diverse yet shared life experiences, and we may overlook that this connection can form a bond to support, not only our pathways to higher education, but also improve our mental and emotional wellbeing. GSP is the parallel pathway within higher education, one that is paved with the intention of building on a connection that is often overlooked in traditional education tracks.