Meet me in the Minute International Week: Joaquin Stephenson


By Kaylee Robinson

Editor’s Note: This is the eighth in a series of ten stories on celebrating International Week.

We sat down with Niles West Physical welfare director Joaquin Stephenson and asked him a few questions about his culture and his experiences.

“I love the values and complexity that being Latino comes with, a blended nation like the United States, I feel like I navigate 2 different worlds, the American norm and the Mexican American values I was raised with. I embrace and I appreciate it,” Stephenson said.

Growing up in an American Mexican household has shaped him into becoming the hardworking, humble person he is today. He said is was always full of life, love, dancing, food, color, vibrancy, passion and honoring the expectation of an advance education.

Stephenson says his mother is a great baker and his favorite dish that she makes is Mexican cookies which are called, pastel de tres leches, “the cake of three milks.”

Stephenson said he lives to make his families lives better. He is deeply influenced by his inspiration Mahatma Gandhi and hopes to empower people and make them become the best versions of themselves.

“I want to make sure my family and future generations know that their is no glass ceiling for them. Everyone’s journey will be different, and how we navigate success may look different,” he said.

Growing up in an Mexican American household has truly shaped him into the great person he is today, and he continues to show Niles West that with hard-work and dedication, anything is possible.