Introducing Buoy to Brown University
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Ever Met A RUE Student?


Every student at Brown has a unique story as to how they made their way to the Providence campus. For many, this path was relatively direct, entering the top university right after high school. However, this straightforward trajectory isn’t the case for everyone — take it from Cuba native Sean Riguera Guillen (‘24)! As a Resumed Undergraduate Education (RUE) scholar, a student with a non-traditional pathway to Brown, Sean has grown through many life experiences prior to beginning his elite education.

“Building my life in America without family or English helped me to mature and to see life with optimism. … I moved from Cuba to America by myself in 2015 and I was granted political asylum. I was homeless for two months in Miami until Church World Services relocated me to Lancaster, PA where I enrolled in community college. Then, I transferred to Brown University as a RUE scholar.”

For Sean, acquiring an economics degree at Brown represents more than just a diploma. Rather, Sean hopes his journey of overcoming unprecedented challenges serves as inspiration for others to make the best of the life they were given and to believe in their potential for success every step of the way.

“Moving up the ladder of success, I realized that most people do not believe in themselves, nor their ability to achieve their dreams. By showing that I have accomplished my dreams I can break the mental chains that keep others as slaves of their own thoughts, and inspire them to become their own hero. … Do you want to save the world? How about if you start by saving yourself - Be your own hero!

I am inspired by having the opportunity to live in a free country and empowered to become the best version of myself every day… choosing the person I want to be and the life I want to have. I am inspired because I’m living the life I dreamt when I was hostage of a system that did not support the development of my potential.

Getting a PhD in economics will help me improve access to equal opportunity for success in America, so that others can achieve their dreams as I have.”

Congrats, Sean! Keep Going.

Read Sean's poetry below to learn more about his inspiring story: 

Buoy would like to extend a BIG THANK YOU to our panelists and everyone who attended our 2020 Newsletter Launch Event!

Congrats to our raffle winners:
Amy Xiao '24
Cecile Schreidah '24
Johnny Chen '24


Ever Find Your Safe Haven At School?⁣⁣


Kenya native, Dennis Kinyua (‘23), found his haven very early on in school, giving him the tools to improve his first home for his family.

“I was born and raised in the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya. I grew up having to watch my father and mother [struggle to] bring some food back home every day, and fight endlessly [...] every single night. School was a safe haven for me; a place where I could run away from the struggles at home and where I could do something to make home a better place.” 

Dennis’ growth was clear when he began looking beyond his personal struggles. He saw how many other families were affected by greater societal issues and how inaccessible education is to many minority communities.

“Now that I am older, I realize my family was just a by-product of the colonial system of education and the neo-colonial Kenyan government. This inspires me to use my education privilege to help break these communal, neo-colonial chains that deprive disadvantaged groups opportunities that would [improve] their lives.”⁣⁣

Despite meeting the required test score, Dennis was rejected from his dream high school in Kenya, a moment that has humbled him and encouraged him to uplift others.⁣⁣

“I never got placed in my dream school nor any school I chose. Instead, I got placed in a school located 4 hours from my home and next to the forested mountains—Nyeri High School. I share this to encourage anyone out there to always fail forward. Nyeri High School [became] a second home that [got me] to where I am right now. Always keep your head high and reach for the stars!”

Indeed, Dennis is definitely dreaming big and reaching for those stars! He aspires to cure cancer someday, and encourages others to embrace your big dreams and tap into your potential of making safe havens.

“My biggest dream is to reduce the prevalence of malignant tumors and cancer. Whatever science can break, science can fix. A break in our body's ability to recognize, manage and fix the errors in our genome replication mechanisms is something that we can fix, and is definitely my life goal.”⁣

Congrats, Dennis! Keep Going.

 bu·oy | ˈbo͞oē,boi/ | Verb. to cause to become cheerful or more confident; to inspire
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