Student Spotlight: Parris Youngblood
October 24, 2016
Public Relations Chair, Parris Youngblood, is currently taking a strong leadership role within the Rio Hondo Staff. Although he is now held at a higher standard with plenty of responsibilities, his current position didn’t simply happen over night.
Before attending Rio Hondo, Youngblood explains how he hadn’t always been at a prime stage in his life when it came down to academics. High school was not a priority for him and he had trouble attending and nothing motivated him to push for success.
“If you were to tell me I’d be where I am today, I absolutely wouldn’t believe it, I didn’t even want to go to college,” Youngblood said. “One [high school] teacher said I wasn’t going to go anywhere, that I would end up in jail,” he continued.
After graduating high school, Youngblood took the initiative to go into school with an athletic approach. He chose to attend Mt. Sierra and Rio Hondo in order to focus on his academics and to physically prepare for swim and water-polo. After juggling both schools part time, he finally made the choice to follow the school that became family, Rio.
Today, a new opportunity has risen. Youngblood has a position within the Associated Students of Rio Hondo College and spreads the word about what kind of impact this program has upon the school.
Youngblood went from a fully committed athlete, to sitting in an office to make a difference beyond the pool. His goal is to reach out to students whenever they need help and to make Rio into a place students will grow to love.
The AS department gets to represent the student body, while organizing school events such as the recent “Coming out Day,” concerts, as well as genuinely taking care of the environment students grow in.
Although it has a completely different vibe from what he is used to, Youngblood has become a positive change. Not only is he trying to always excel academically, he is now a leader of a union with responsibilities that affect him, his team, and an entire student body.
“Don’t get me wrong, the athletic department will always be like family, but now I get to spread the word about AS and help other students.”
He went on to state how he faces everyday struggles like any other person. Self doubt has been one of his biggest obstacles, yet he learns to fight it every day.
“It’s that competitive side of me that gets me going. It’s like swim. If you’re in the middle of the ocean and you don’t keep swimming you’re not going anywhere. Now it feels like I’m swimming to different islands!”
Youngblood has learned that you can reach places you’ve never imagined and is hoping that with this new position, he can inspire and help others as well.