Victoria Orindas Corcino is a third-year student at the University of Central Florida, majoring in Biomedical Sciences. She is a LEAD Scholar and a member of our Burnett Honors College who has a strong commitment to her community and a great potential to lead change. Earlier this year, Victoria founded a nonprofit called Orlandoagainstcorona to help support vulnerable populations during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with her efforts being recognized by local and campus news outlets. She then founded another nonprofit called SALT Outreach to further help the homeless population in Central Florida and create volunteering opportunities for UCF’s students. Her compassion for others, passion for service and commitment to scholarship are inspiring. I know she will benefit greatly from this fellowship, as will her peers and community.
Community service has always been my priority since my early teens. I am originally from an impoverished country, Republic of Moldova. Youth homelessness has always been at its highest, and I attempted to ameliorate this issue through my volunteer work at a homeless shelter. Moving to America four years ago, I faced the same social issue, homelessness. Once the pandemic struck, I was aware of the detrimental impact it had on the homeless population. I decided to focus all of my effort towards improving their current situation. Since the majority of non-profit organizations had discontinued or reduced their operations in March 2020, the homeless population were left without the support system they were originally relying on. However, I discovered a local non-profit called SALT Outreach that was one of the few non-profits that had continued its operations. I witnessed first-hand how impactful their work was. I approached their leadership team and collaborated with them on founding the UCF chapter, called SALT Outreach at UCF, to expand SALT’s operations and serve more individuals in need. We are partnering with various student organizations to provide more services and help our homeless friends step into a new phase of their lives.