Meet the dancer
Estevan, from Anaheim, California, is 13 years old, and is currently studying in 8th grade. He has been dancing on the Passion y Tumbao Project of OCAC since he was 6 years old. He is a 2x World Silver Medalist in 3 salsa divisions with Passion y Tumbao, and a finalist in the junior boys solo division. His interests outside of salsa dancing are playing soccer, hip hop, and breakdancing. In the past, while dancing at OCAC, he wanted to be a bboy, but then he saw salsa and thought it was pretty cool. He also thinks history, geography, and science are interesting. Estevan likes to do hands on experiments and chemistry labs. Estevan hopes to one day work side by side with his dance teacher Marco Rosas and open more dance studios to provide underprivileged youth the opportunity to learn Salsa and Latin rhythms.
Why does he need a scholarship?
Estevan wants this scholarship because he really wants to succeed in life and go to a great school. He says, “I want a school where I can receive a good education, with teachers that don’t leave right after school. I want teachers that will stay after school to help me with things I don’t understand. I want to go to a school, knowing that teachers will take the time after school to meet one on one with me because they care about my learning. In my past schools, I felt that no matter what, I have always been singled out by my teacher for behavior or not understanding something right way. Most of the time, I felt it was unfair and unjust. If I could get more attention with smaller class sizes and get help after school or before school, I can definitely be successful.”
Being the only boy dancer at OCAC and the Passion y Tumbao Project for five years, he has stuck it out because he really loves dancing. He wants to be the first ever male salsa dancer to bring Fairmont some titles in salsa. This is important to him because he feels at Fairmont he can be proud to be a male salsa dancer, whereas right now in his current situation, he cannot. He has even had to transfer districts because he is a male dancer. “I want to be able to walk freely and be proud of being a male salsa dancer. At my school, I have been discriminated against to the point of being bullied because I am a male salsa dancer, and people think that dancing is mainly for girls. I have wanted to show off my talent at school talent shows, but have shied away from it because of fear of persecution. With my talent as a salsa dancer, I will give the school my 110% in dance. I want to try to recruit other males to learn salsa and later join our dance team. I will dance to represent my school and try to go after medals and awards.”
“About three years ago my father lost his job, and my parents approached my directors and told them I would have to quit dancing because we as a family could not afford it anymore. The directors saw the potential in me, and told my parents to keep bringing me. Now I am a silver medalist in 3 divisions two years in a row and a finalist in the junior boys solo division which is a highly competitive category.” Estevan states.
“My parents and I are committed to working hard to find funding, so that I could get a world-class education and become a successful person in the future. My father has graphic design and social media expertise which is useful for our effort to get the word out. My mother has administrative skills that will help keep us organized. We as a family value the opportunity that an education at Fairmont can give me as a student and hope that it will be possible for me to dance for them.”