About Nicole Collazo
Nicole Collazo finished her bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, Law and Behavior Science at Russell Sage College in 2021 and now works at the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York.
“My interest in Criminal Justice came from a line of lawyers and political leaders in my family back in Dominican Republic, where my parents migrated from,” she says.
One of her main responsibilities at Legal Aid is client intake — collecting the background information that will match Legal Aid’s clients with the appropriate attorney. It’s fulfilling to know she’s played a part helping clients access needed assistance, Nicole says.
Nicole describes her Sage education as characterized by opportunities for service and to build leadership skills.
“I’ve been involved with everything from Track and Field to student government to a step/dance club that some of my peers and I started on campus,” she says.
She was also a member of Sage’s Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, an intern at the New York State Assembly and a student-ambassador in the admissions office. In 2020, she received an award for her activities advancing multicultural appreciation at Sage.
“These leadership roles led the way to breaking me out of a shell I did not even know I had,” she continues. “I was able to meet more people like myself that came from the same cultural background and wanted to leave a mark at the school.”
Today, in addition to her work at Legal Aid, Nicole is active with Capital District Latinos, an organization that supports the cultural, political and economic empowerment of the Latino community in New York’s Capital District. She volunteers in its food pantry and photographs its events while she continues to build a service and leadership mindset.
“The experiences I was inspired by at Sage were ones created by my own peers,” she says. “From putting together spirit weeks, class dinners, photo shoots, to even being able to sit on panels and have conversations about things like diversity and inclusion showed me how getting involved wherever you are, no matter who you are, can prepare you for your next level, and I am thankful for that.”