Samanta Lopez is a transformational leader that has been invested in the Delaware community for over a decade. She serves as the Mentoring Co-Chair on the Fresh Start board.
Samanta holds a Master of Public Administration from Kutztown University, and a Master of Education from the University of Delaware. Her professional trajectory in education of 10+ years, began in non-traditional spaces, such as in Urban community centers, teaching English as a second language to community members, especially women. Samanta served as the director of a grant-based mentoring program for ASPIRA of Delaware that allowed her to reach at-risk youth, who often “go by the wayside,” and she helped create a pathway of possibilities that promoted education and leadership through mentoring and partnership with the business leaders. Samanta was able to assure that 87% of the students in her program attended higher education. She has been able to reach and motivate numerous young people and their parents towards high school graduation, and college persistence, overcoming barriers of language, citizenship, and socioeconomic status.
In the past 5 years, Samanta has been diligent in identifying leadership opportunities to advocate for the Latino community and beyond, around education, access, and health. Currently, she is a Lead for Delaware recipient awaiting School Leadership Certification to pledge that one day, ALL kids in Delaware will attend excellent schools. Samanta received a Data Wise Leadership Certification from Harvard University to understand improvement strategies that are based in equity and integrity. She is also a 2018 Leadership of Delaware Fellow cultivating knowledge, vision, integrity, and networks to significantly impact and transform our communities. In 2009, she received the Genevieve Gore Young Leadership Award for her demonstrated commitment of social justice and leadership in the Latino and broader Delaware communities.
Aside from serving as a change agent in Delaware, Ms. Lopez loves to teach. She is a teacher at Howard High School, where she creates a culture of linguistic importance and ensures that English Learners are supported, empowered, and encouraged to reach a higher level of English proficiency and confidence. In addition, as an adjunct instructor at the University of Delaware, School of Education, Ms. Lopez has engaged future teachers on how to implement diversity initiatives in the classroom, and bridge sociocultural incompatibilities to build a stronger and unified Delaware. Ms. Lopez overall goal is to help the Latino community create and sustain a positive footprint in Delaware and beyond.