Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Pathway to Becoming a Congresswoman


(Photo credit: Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images)

Monique Rosas, Editor

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, also known as AOC, the youngest woman ever elected for congress. Born into a working-class Puerto-Rican family in the Bronx, New York. She attended Boston University where she majored in economics and international relations. During her time at Boston University, she worked for Ted Kennedy’s office where she focused on immigration issues. She had a passion to make a change in politics, but sadly those dreams were put on hold after the death of her father. 

After the loss of Sergio Oscaio-Roman (Alexandria’s dad) due to cancer, the Ocasio-Cortez family faced serious financial issues. When AOC graduated from university, she rushed home to help her family. She would work tons of shifts as a waitress and bartender to help her family financially. As she worked normal jobs she developed more of an understanding of how income inequality was affecting the people of America. She told INSIDER, I got really, really, really good at listening to people, and I got really good at understanding people’s needs, beyond just food and drink.” Her experiences encouraged her even more to pursue a career in politics. 

During the 2016 presidential election, Alexandria worked as a volunteer organizer for Bernie Sanders. AOC’s experience with the presidential candidate helped expand her skills in activism. She was highly encouraged by BNC cofounder Saikat Chakrabartito to run for congress as she was an “incredible candidate.” When she returned to New York, she launched her people-funded campaign for congress. On November 6, 2018, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made history after she won and became the youngest woman in congress. It was her first time running for office as a Democratic Socialist. Overnight she became a sensation to the people of color living in the U.S. 

Alexandria has the highest social media following compared to any other house member. AOC’s Twitter started at 300 followers and now has increased to over 2 million followers. She feels as her social media platform allows her to directly address problematic issues with her supporters. She has expressed in many interviews that all of her tweets are written by her and no one else. Though her supporters not only love her political views but as well her way of sharing her emotions as a normal person. She appeared on Vogue’s youtube channel where she emphasizes the importance of self-care especially when you have a very draining job like politics. 

There has been a large debate since AOC’s first election on whether or not she is the most qualified candidate for congress. Though the younger generations such as Gen Z love the congresswomen, there is a lot that we don’t know about her. Some politicians in the Republican and even Democratic parties believe that her policy proposals are impracticable and too costly. Yes, she is promoting great improvements in the injustices in the world, but the way she wants to address it might not be the most effective. 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is such a great inspiration and voice for the younger generations. We will continue to hear her name as she was just re-elected for Congress 2020. Although she does have some room for improvement, we should be lucky to be able to watch such an amazing woman grow into the world of politics.