In 2019, Yo Soy LOLA net proceeds funded three $3,000 scholarships for Latina-identifying artists pursuing higher education in the arts with goals that directly impact their communities. Help us support young Latinas develop the skills necessary to succeed in artistic careers.
Make a Tax-Deductible donation today for this year!
Read all about our 2019 scholarship recipients below and get a glimpse of their work, dreams, and goals.
Deborah Alejandra Berman-Chirolla (a.k.a. Bed Hermin) is a graduate student at Lesley University, pursuing a Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with an Expressive Arts Therapy specialization. Fueled by a passion for healing through the arts, she is currently exploring healing processes that utilize the human capacity for imagination, creativity, and intermodal play.
Born in Atlanta, GA, Bed was raised in Bogota, Columbia and Boston, MA. After picking up life lessons in Los Angeles, Sao Paulo, and Brooklyn, she has returned to the Boston area with a love of her multicultural heritage.
Bed seeks to provide relief to people who find themselves lost in a sea of anxiety and depression that results from systemic oppression and to offer them a medium and method for working through these struggles.
Cassandra Bernabel is a Boston born and raised Afro-Latina. She discovered her love for art while studying at Wakefield Memorial High School as a METCO student. She began her artistic journey by exploring calligraphy before finding her passion for photography and ceramics. While pursuing a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology at Framingham State University, she completed a double minor in photography and ceramics.
Cassandra will now be pursuing a Masters in Art Education at the School of Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University. Her goal is to become a high school art educator in a diverse neighborhood, working with students of color and supporters to redefine the art world.
Michelle Garcia Fresco
Michelle Garcia Fresco is an Afro-Latinx poet and organizer based in Boston. She is currently a freshman at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, and is double majoring in Creative Writing and Sociology.
Michelle believes in the power of poetry as a medium for social justice, and her writing is often inspired by the women in her family, social and racial injustice in America, the challenges of coping with loss and mental health, and by her Dominican roots.
Michelle is an alumni of Louder Than A Bomb, a MassLeap board member, and an organizer, as well as the Youth Liaison and Youth programmer at the House Slam. She tends to see herself, though, as just a battle rapper with social justice bars.
Viviana Williams is a senior at Roxbury Prep High School and will be graduating as this year’s valedictorian. Fueled by the injustices and racial disparities found within our society, her poetry and fashion design give voice to the struggles of those around her and offer a glimpse into her experience as an Afro-Latina. She moulds these voices into artwork that cannot be ignored as she works to help her community understand women of color and their intersectionality.
Viviana aspires to be a leader for women of color and is passionate about raising awareness of Afro-Latinx identities. Through her art, she hopes to foster unison in her community and to encourage individuals to accept all parts of their identity.