Karla Rodriguez: Managerial and Political Leadership

Karla Rodriguez
Managerial and Political Leadership
B.A., June 2011, Magna cum Laude
Home College: City
Faculty Mentor: Prof. Maria Binz-Scharf, Economics, City
Colin Powell Leadership Fellow
Skadden Arps Fellow in Legal Studies
City College Honors Student
Harvey Leopold ’57 Scholarship in Management
City College Asian Studies Award for Excellence
SUNY Award for Outstanding Achievement
Dean’s List

Before college, Karla Rodriguez spent eight years as a professional dancer and choreographer. She trained at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and the José Limón Institute and danced with several international companies and artists in theaters and television. She loved the opportunity to travel as a performer, and says that the demands of “living far from family, constantly moving from one place to another, the long hours of training, the fierce competition and the constant auditions” helped mold her into the person she is today:  they taught her determination, discipline, independence and open-mindedness.

[Find out what makes CUNY BA a great degree route for performing artists at this link: http://info.cunyba.gc.cuny.edu/cunyba-for-performers/]

Rodriguez was born and raised in Barcelona. She started college in 2008 at City College, entering CUNY BA two years later. In her CUNY application, she talked about her desire to become a leader for change. “Globalization, shifting geopolitical forces, outsourcing, the recent economic uncertainty, ethical scandals and the insecurity associated with war and terrorism lead us to realize that leaders will be facing a very difficult job keeping people grounded, focused and motivated toward accomplishing positive goals in these periods of rapid change. For this reason, I believe a major in Leadership is of the utmost importance.”

She has been a very involved student and New Yorker. She served in Student Government, was the vice president of the school’s business fraternity, fundraised for the Veterans Association and founded and led the Abada Capoeira Club. Outside of school, she regularly volunteers for the American Cancer Society, the ING NYC Marathon, the March of Dimes, the NY AIDS Walk and the Million Trees Organization. She is fluent in several languages: Catalan, Spanish, French, Portuguese and English, and is now studying Mandarin Chinese and Arabic. She has also moderated discussions at several symposiums.

Rodriguez’s area was made up of courses from economics and political science. She completed two internships, one with the International Rescue Committee’s Refugee Youth Program and one with the Local Initiatives Support Corp. She is currently on the committee of the International Dance Contest City of Barcelona where she works as the Delegate in the U.S. In her final semester, she completed a Powell capstone project, Disruptive Innovation in Public Education, as well as an honors thesis, Creativity and Innovation as Foundations of Leadership.