Paulina Colon: Read about #herPoliticalJourney

My name is Paulina Colon and I’m a student at Syracuse University. When I graduate I want to go back to Puerto Rico and after studying law and practicing I would like to run for the U.S. Senate. I am interested in politics because I believe in handling issues in the most fair way possible. Politics is about resolving conflict and creating better opportunity. I am also a firm believer in giving back to the community. It really bothers me how women are under represented in every aspect. If more women are in politics, we would be living in a better world. There's always a quote that cracks me up it goes, "If women ruled the world there would be no wars. Just a bunch of angry countries not talking to each other." It's true. We need women to represent other women. There isn't one day that I don't wake up and I think to myself "What have I done for my community today?" We need girls who are interested in giving back, for the good of a better world. I am from Puerto Rico, and whenever I pass by the capitol building in el Viejo San Juan, I get goosebumps. It's really difficult to put all my feelings into words, but whenever I pass by this building I have hope that I can construct a better tomorrow, and I know I will.

My mom has always been my biggest role model. She had me at a very young age, and still went to school and got her Juris Doctor (J.D.). After becoming a lawyer, she went on to be a prosecutor for the unit specialized in Domestic Violence. It's really hard not to be inspired by such a wonderful woman. After leaving home for college, I knew I had it in me to be like my mom and become an advocate for those people who have a little-to no voice. I believe that good representatives are those who are engaged, are fair, and give back to the community. Giving back to my community, especially to Syracuse University, has influenced me to become a better person, and contemplate the idea to one day run for office.

I have learned how much I can care about others, instead of putting myself first. I believe politics is all about representing your constituents, and not so much about yourself. Some people are very selfish by nature... even I can be selfish sometimes, but wanting to change the world leaves you no option but to get over that feeling. Understanding the things I like and don't like, and my boundaries has also helped in tremendous ways. It is okay to step out of your comfort zone, but you have to be aware of the things that just DON'T enrich your soul. I think that's the most important lesson I have learned. Also, the importance of staying true to your values and your beliefs is very important. My top priority is serving, but remembering where I come from.

When I run for office I would like to focus on laws that focus mainly on women’s protection. I have seen so many different cases of Domestic Violence or sexual assaults that it is disgusting. This is something that I want to help fix and something that is not touched upon enough. I would also like to work with fixing the gender gap in politics, which is why I feel I am born to lead.