Participant Name: Daniel Palafox

Major: Urban Studies and Criminology

Year: Second Year

Pronouns: He, Him, His

Hello everyone! My name is Daniel and I am a second year Urban Studies and Criminology, Law and  Society double major at the University of California, Irvine. I am a first-generation college student making the most out of all the opportunities presented to me. Being a first-generation student on campus empowers me to push myself further because I know that I not only represent myself but a community of driven individuals seeking change. I have come to realize that the change affecting us today is unprecedented. This is why I have chosen my fields of study, I believe that sustainability is grounded in the foundation of sustainable cities and policies ensuring that people are able to live a salubrious lifestyle.
Throughout my first two years, I have manifested a foundation for leadership and knowledge in understanding modern-day issues facing our generation. Working with the Global Sustainability Resource Center on campus has shown students like me how imperative it is to tackle environmental issues facing various marginalized communities. My leadership approach thus transformed into one in which I lead with compassion.
Coming into this Costa Rica Program, I hope to apply techniques in understanding how sustainability practices are administered in Costa Rican communities but more broadly, understanding how Costa Ricans feel about their ever-changing environment. Both of my degrees allow me to create a more holistic understanding of how communities are transformed by city planning and also how legislation facilitates and/or hinders change.
My dream job would entail litigating in the areas of environmental or torts law while also maintaining a presence in the creative construction of city planning. I know that the Costa Rica Program will provide me with the experiences necessary to become a more compassionate global citizen and garner the necessary skills for my future career.