Jose Canizal is a first-generation Latino student attending Rio Hondo College and majoring in Electrical Engineering. He is involved in various programs and organizations such as United Friends of the Children and the California Youth Connection (CYC), that engages, inspires, and supports the foster youth population.
He is passionate and motivated in working towards making a meaningful impact in the foster care system. Knowing first hand the trauma and hardships that this vulnerable population experiences, he is able to provide insight and help bridge the gap for foster youth.
Before accepting the position as Organizing Coordinator with NFYI, Jose participated in NFYI’s Internship program which supports and encourages youth to develop leadership skills and identify roles that will ultimately create lasting change in the foster care system, both statewide and federally, through policy and legislation. He is involved in many organizations but his true desire is to create a non-profit organization that will support and mentor all foster youth K-12 who have an interest in any STEM career.
Jose strongly believes just because his educational potential was heavily impacted by being moved around to multiple placements, doesn’t mean anyone else should limit theirs. His dream is to change statistics into potential and that more than half of Child Welfare stakeholders, be made up of former foster youth.