Her Story: Becoming a Leader: Aimar B. Galarza

College was a step forward to begin my own journey, to discover myself in life, and to become the person I want to be.

This is my story, the story that tells of the beginnings and the baby steps that would take me to places I thought I would never be in.


August 2016: First Year at College (UPR-RP)

At first, gaining one’s own independence and being far away from your family is not an easy task. Here came the world of studies and adulthood. It was time to crack out of the shell that was high school.

I was a shy girl during my middle school and high school years, but that changed when I had to leave the comfort of my home to pursue my dreams of becoming a writer. I encountered new people and had to open myself, which helped me become a more social and outgoing person.

I started to do one of the things I deeply love: voice acting. Developing my social skills in person and with the online community opened doors to incredible networking opportunities.


2017: Unexpected Circumstances

The University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus (UPR-RP) went on a national strike from the final weeks of March up to the beginning of June, ending in the cancelation of classes during that period.

In September, Puerto Rico was visited by the worst hurricane to ever affect our little island: Hurricane Maria.

There were plenty of situations going on one after the other without letting Puerto Ricans breathe for even a second. Nevertheless, these circumstances fueled my determination to create and implement something new at my college in betwixt these disruptions-- this is where I decided to take the role of becoming a leader.


December 2017: The Journey Begins

The well-known a cappella group Pentatonix and the Pitch Perfect movies inspired me, and the idea of implementing an a cappella group in the UPR just hit me. Because I’m a music lover and a piano player, I decided that the UPR should have its own a cappella group.

I had a vision that could shape the future into something incredible.

I started by contacting the people in charge of musical groups in the UPR and made a proposal for the new group-in-making. As soon as the proposal was accepted, I started designing flyers for auditions and putting them up around the university. The announcement went viral and more than 60 people contacted me about their interest in the group.

The next step was to find a room for the auditions. I got in contact with the office of Human Resources in Plaza Universitaria, which lent me a room for the auditions to take place in. Afterward, I contacted my music professor from the university, along with three other professionals to participate as judges.


February 2018: Auditions

On February 9, 2018, the auditions for the new a cappella group came to be. Only 14 people were picked out of the 40 that auditioned. That is where the new a cappella group of the UPR, Passionato, was born.


Here are my best leadership tips:

Becoming Passionato’s leader was not an easy road and it’s still a difficult one to take.

Being a leader entails being strong for the people that surround you, being wise in your decisions, being patient, knowing the best way to communicate with your fellow “co-workers”, listening to others, portraying your vision to its fullest, and learning how to never give up when things go wrong.

Time has also been challenging for me in a way, but it’s all about knowing how to balance that time. University studies, voice acting, writing for Her Campus UPR, arranging songs for Passionato, and participating in club or association activities seems like a pretty overwhelming challenge to take on, but it’s really not that difficult. Making my own schedule and trying my best to stick to it has helped me find time for my friends and family as well as being able to write creative stories.


To all the readers out there, just remember this:

If you have a vision, don’t let it go. Think of possible ways to make your dreams and visions come true. No matter how many times you have to try, don’t let it get you down.

Do you want to be a good leader? Make a change and start now.


The world is waiting for you.