The Center for Experiential Learning and Diversity

Brukab Sisay

Leadership Scholar

Project: Expansion of the Dream Project to all Washington state public universities


brukabsisayMy name is Brukab Sisay and I am currently a junior majoring in American Ethnic Studies. I was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, but grew up mainly Tukwila, Washington. I am a member of the leadership team of the UW Dream Project, a program on campus that partners UW undergraduates with low-income and first-generation high school juniors and seniors to help them achieve their higher education goals. As I’ve seen first hand through my experience in the program, the Dream Project is a truly unique program that has multiple benefits for its undergraduate and high school participants. To be able to share the program with other communities, I am currently working with fellow Dream Team members to expand our program to universities and colleges across the United States.

Receiving the Mary Gates Leadership Scholarship has been a symbol to me of this university’s investment in me as a student-leader. Through the resources this scholarship has provided me, I’ve been given the opportunity to commit more time not only to the development of the Dream Project and its expansion, but sustaining my work as well. Through the process of applying for the scholarship I was presented with the challenge to think critically about my work, my development thorough my work, and my understandings of leadership. This process helped me to better understand how I can support the growth of those I work with, and has also helped me to develop the tools to grow through reflection on my work and my leadership. Overall the Mary Gates Leadership scholarship has given me the resources, and opportunity to engage more in my work in the Dream Project and better understand myself as a leader.