Samy J. Galvez
Scholar Class – 2014
Samy Galvez was born to a loving Mormon family in Guatemala City, Guatemala. However, being raised in an ultra-conservative society, he was constantly exposed to homophobia in school and other day-to-day situations. Despite this constant stress, Samy excelled in high school and was honored by the Guatemalan President as one of the Top Five Scholars of the Nation, winning the National Science Olympics in Physics and Math, becoming the Student Body President and graduating as the valedictorian.
After spending a semester at Brigham Young University (BYU), Samy served a Latter-day Saints mission in San Francisco California from 2009-2011. It was at that time that he found ways to both accept himself as a gay man and to lead an enriching spiritual life. After returning to BYU, Samy started working on his major in Neuroscience and preparing to go to medical school. As part of his preparation for medical school, Samy has served in service organizations, volunteered in hospitals, and helped interpret in rural clinics in his native Guatemala.
After deciding to become involved in LGBTQ activism at BYU, Samy became president of USGA --the only LGBTQ group for BYU students. He has spoken to Utah political leaders as part of the effort to pass the Utah anti-discrimination bill, and he has traveled to Mexico to speak to other LGBTQ Mormons about finding a balance between sexuality and spirituality.