By the time he was 10 years old, Yim Rodriguez '14 was working in the streets of Peru, selling vegetables and homemade sweets to help support his family. By 16, he was the spokesperson for a group advocating for reform of child labor laws for the benefit other street kids. For his final two years of high school, he attended the United World College in Montezuma, N.M.
Now, as an Earlham student, he is pursuing wide-ranging interests. He is planning to major in neuroscience, but has wide ranging interests including architecture, social justice issues, and drumming.
"I don't think a person should be focused on just one thing," he says. "To me, knowledge is one. The division of knowledge into different parts is ridiculous to me."
One of Rodriguez's many interests is in mural painting, and last winter break, he was engaged by a student group at the University of Western Ontario to paint a large mural in the university library. The massive work, which covers a portion of the ceiling and walls of a large study room, incorporates images of indigenous cultures of Latin America. He hopes that the work with raise consciousness about social justice issues on that campus.
At Earlham, he was engaged to paint a set of four paintings that are now showing as part of a display marking the College's receipt of the Davis Cup, an annual award is given to the College or university that enrolls the most participants in the Davis United World College Scholars program. (The program is the largest privately funded international scholarship program in the world, supporting the education of 2000 undergraduates from 133 countries at institutions across the United States.) Rodriguez himself is a Davis Scholar.
On the connection between his interests in science and art, he says, "both these things require you to be picky. It's all about the details."
Yim Rodriguez 2014
Hometown: Chiclayo, Peru
Major at Earlham: Neuroscience
Interests: Art, drumming, social justice issues