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“Three things have helped me over the years: support from others, a drive to do more, and a little bit of luck.”
Profile: Since graduating cum laude from Loyola University of Chicago in 2011, Young Scholar, turned College Scholar, now Graduate Scholar Larissa Rymko has been busy doing what she loves most: helping others. Larissa has been on the front lines with society’s most vulnerable populations. As a First Responder with First Step in Michigan, Larissa has worked with victims of intimate partner violence as well as sexual assault survivors. As an advocate in First Step’s emergency shelter, Larissa provides support to incoming survivors, crisis intervention on a 24 hour hotline, and goes out into community agencies (such as hospitals and police stations) to further advocate for those experiencing recent trauma. She’s on her way now to the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor to earn a master’s degree in social work.
Inspiration: Larissa said her aunt has been a deciding influence in her life. “A teacher by trade, she has always been there pushing me to try harder, go further, and to not accept living within my comfort zone. If something felt overwhelming, she always found a way to inspire me to overcome it. She helped me realize that self doubt is something meant to push you forward, not hold you back.”
University of Michigan
Rutgers State University