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Diverse fields of study that share one
common goal: enriching the lives of others.

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A Message from Assistant Director, David de la Rosa


It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to Penn State University! My name is David de la Rosa and I am a proud 1st-generation graduate. My pronouns are He/Him. I am of Puerto Rican heritage, and I also identify as a person with a disability. These identities that I have mentioned have shaped my college journey and made me the person that I am today.  

And while that journey was not always easy, it was worth every second in hopes of chasing my dreams! I welcome you on this journey of chasing your own dreams. Your identities and interests will shape your path toward success!

I am excited to get to know all of you throughout your transition to Penn State. As you get settled in, please feel welcome to stop by our office and say hello or schedule a meeting through Starfish.  


David de la Rosa

Assistant Director of Diversity and Inclusion

The College of Health and Human Development

image of Andrea Burgos

Hear from a Former First-Year Student: Andrea Burgos Mercado

Hello incoming students :)

My name is Andrea Burgos and I’m a sophomore here at Penn State. My intended major is in Communication Sciences and Disorders with a minor in French.  

What an exciting time of the year! You all finished your senior year of high school and are about to enter a new stage of your life at Penn State. This summer has a lot of mixed feelings and emotions, and I would like to tell you a bit about my experience before I started my first year in college.  

I was not sure of what to feel; all I knew was that I was glad to be done with high school and to finally move on and go somewhere different for a change. The problem was that I did not know what to expect. I heard a lot of different things from everyone around me, like, “College is going to be ten times harder than high school,” “College years are the best years of your life so don’t waste it,” “Oh you’re going to Penn State? WE ARE,” and “Nena enfócate en la escuela y no en las fiestas, ok?! (Girl you better focus on school and not on parties ok?!).” But what is college really like? That is a question that we all have to answer for ourselves.  

Before jumping into the unknown let me give you some advice that will help you through your freshman year.  

First, do not skip the first week of school. “Sylly Week” is not a thing and the first week of school is your opportunity to determine the intensity of each class and how much time and effort you have to put into each one.  

Second, Penn State is crazy big but, a good way of finding your people is by getting involved in clubs and activities that you like. Getting involved will also help you form a schedule and have time to think about other things that are not academic-related.  

Third, from academic help to financial resources, to concerts and student engagement activities, there are a lot of resources and opportunities that Penn State has to offer. The thing is, it is your job to look for them and use them as you need; those resources will not come by themselves all the time. It’s your responsibility to take advantage of them.  

Finally, take time for yourself. There is a lot to take in the first year of college, but do not forget to give yourself some self-love. You deserve to be here, and you are not alone. Time will fly by and before you know it, you are going to be a sophomore!  

Therefore, remember to enjoy your time here and to look at the beautiful trees that surround the buildings. This is your new home away from home.  

Finally, be sure to visit the Office for Diversity and Inclusion in Henderson 20.  If you have any questions, concerns, or just need a few words of encouragement please do not hesitate on visiting the Office and connecting with Ms. Joyce or Mr. David. I may see you there as well!


Wish you all the best,  

Andrea Burgos 

Communication Sciences and Disorders Major

French Minor

Class of 2025