Summer Seminar Students
For five weeks, current students and recent graduates from local Los Angeles Unified high schools participate in a summer seminar at UCLA. While here, they study graduate-level research theories and models, which they put into practice in the field.
Perla Angulo, 16, is a junior at Woodrow Wilson High School. It is her first year as a member of the council and was interested because she thinks that all schools are not treated equally. She is a determined individual who one day wants to own a clinic in Mexico.
Cynthia Guerra, 16, is a junior at Wilson High School. A member of the council starting this summer, she joined because she wants to make her community a better place and hopes to make schools a better place for students. She is involved in a lot of summer programs to get help for her schoolwork.
Erick Palacio, 16, is a senior at Woodrow Wilson High School. He has been a member of the council since summer 2009. He was interested in joining because he thought it would be a good experience and help him with his writing and speaking skills. He likes to play basketball, draw and mix.
Moses Sanchez, 17, will be a senior at Woodrow Wilson High this fall. He's been in Youth Council of Research for a year and joined because he was intrigued by social justice and empowering his community. In his spare time, he paints and sketches, for which he has received a scholarship.
Brandon Chatmon, 16, attends Manual Arts High School. He decided to join the council because it deals with something that will affect him on an everyday basis—education. This is his first summer in this program, but he hopes to make a huge impact on our cause!!! He is also a hard worker.
Franklin Hernandez, 15, is a junior at Manual Arts High School. His first year in the council, he became interested when he heard it was about helping his community having a voice. He would one day want those who think they are voiceless to be heard. Also, he would like to go to University of Southern California when he finishes high school.
Judith Hernandez, 16, is a junior at Manual Arts High School, and has been a member of the council for one year. She was interested in the program because she got tired of complaining and she wanted to contribute to change. She wants to pass all of her classes and do well on the SAT so that she can get a scholarship to UCLA.
Patricia Odilon, 15, is a junior at Manual Arts High School. A member of the council for the first time, Patricia was interested because she wants a better future for herself and the other people that surround her and for her school to provide a better education. She has always tried to help people any way she could. She never gives up and tries hard.
Angelica Torres, 14, is a sophomore at Manual Arts High School. She started the council this summer. She was interested in joining because it sounded like fun, and also, she likes to do research. She likes to play volleyball and she wants to join the girls’ soccer team at Manual Arts.
Sofia Arevalo, 15, is a junior at Roosevelt High School. A new member of the council, Sofia was first interested in joining because she wanted to be an agent of change in her community and her school. Sofia is also involved in cross-country, Solar Cup, M.E.S.A, and the student council and is aspiring to attend an elite school and become a neuroscientist, engineer or doctor.
Evelyn Flores, 17, is a senior at Roosevelt High School. A member of the council for two years, Evelyn was first interested in joining because she wanted her student voice to be heard and be allowed to take action and change the system of education in her community and around the state. Evelyn also enjoys playing tennis for her school’s tennis team. Aside from helping out her community, she hopes to one day become a professional researcher.
Oscar Mojica, 18, is a senior at Roosevelt High School. He is a football player there. He loves AMERICA!!
Brian Castellanos, 16, is a junior at Crenshaw High School. A member of the council for one year and a half, Brian was interested in joining because he wanted to learn research methods and do something positive for his community. He would like to attend a university in California.
Carolina Gallardo, 16, is a senior at Crenshaw High School. A member of the council for two years, Carolina was first interested in joining the council because she wanted to learn more about researching. Carolina also likes to ride her bike around her community.
Emily Ramos, 17, is a senior at Crenshaw High School. A member of the council for two years, Emily was first interested in joining the council because she was an active student who has always believed in getting students’ voices heard, and has always been a fan of UCLA. Emily has quite an imagination and is always up for adventures.
Bernardo Torres,17, is a senior at Crenshaw Senior High School. He has been a member of the council for two years. His purpose of joining the program was to be aware of the Los Angeles environment and to gain skills in interviewing because he plans on being a journalist or radio/television broadcaster. What Bernardo finds most interesting about the program is the motivating theories. Bernardo’s hobbies are listening to music and baking.
Jessica Velazquez, 17, is a senior at Crenshaw High School. She is a new member of the council. She was fascinated in joining the council because she was interested in the topic the group was researching and making a difference in her school. Jessica is an avid member at her church.
Gustavo Correa, 17, is a senior at Locke High School. A new member of the council, Gustavo was invited by one of his friends to come and join the council because of how the people in charge are there to help the students have a better education. Gustavo is also an athletic person who would love to receive a scholarship to play soccer and volleyball for UCLA.
Dimitri Meighan, 16, is a junior at Locke High School and has been a member of the council for one year. He joined because his teacher told him about it and he went to the first meeting and he really liked it. He likes to make people laugh and be laughed at.
Cesar Ramirez, 17, is a junior at Locke High School. A member of the council for a year and a half, Cesar was first interested in joining because he wanted to have a voice in his city and be remembered after his death. He wanted to really be a part of changing the world and not just letting it pass by. Cesar is also a cross-country runner and hopes to get a scholarship to UCLA to run for them.
Frank Reed, 16, is entering his junior year at Locke High School. He just became a member of the council this summer because he is interested in social justice. He loves to play football and hopes to play this year. He also has always wanted to visit Africa to explore.
Keisha Solis, 17, attends Locke High School. She will be going into the 11th grade in the fall. She started with the council this summer. She joined this program because her teacher said it would be good to know what’s really going on in school—what the schools don’t tell us. She has learned a lot from being in this program—what they try to keep from us. In this program we’re discovering the truth. A fun fact about me is I like to read and hang out.
Miguel Sosa, 17, is soon to become a senior at Locke High School. He joined the youth council last fall hoping to change the way his community is perceived. Miguel was interested in becoming a member of a youth organization, but wasn’t sure which one to join. He figured it out when he heard about the UCLA youth council because he was trying to do all he could to attend that university. Miguel has many things in his mind, but he will never forget playing soccer. He is the returning goalie for his high school and is hoping to have a successful year not only with his soccer team but also with the council.
Gregorio Arenas, 18, is going to be a freshman at University of California, Santa Cruz. He has been a member of the council for two years because of his curiosity to know what he can do to make a difference in his community. Gregorio is a person who enjoys running and being active since he feels awful not doing anything at all.
Aaron Armstrong is a recent graduate of Manual Arts High School. He has been a member of the council for the last three years. The council has taught him to battle oppression. He was recommended to the council by a teacher who he didn’t have such great relationship with, but she still saw the potential in him. He is using what he has learned to teach and organize others. He is planning on going to San Francisco State in the spring, but until then he will be at Los Angeles Community Colleges taking classes that will help him to become a web page designer. Designing web page has become his newfound passion.
Beverly Ann Castillo, 19, is entering her fourth summer with the council. She is also beginning her sophomore year at San Francisco State. She initially joined because a teacher suggested it and she was interested. She keeps coming back because the experiences and knowledge are always new, life-changing and inspiring. The program helps youth realize their potential for making changes in society, and she has grown personally through this program. Beverly smiles a whole lot—in fact, she thinks she smiles more than the average person!
Gabriela Dominguez, 17, will soon be a freshman at the University of Southern California. She has been a part of the council for about three years. She is completely grateful that she was introduced to this program because it has been a mind-opening experience. Before this program she wasn't really motivated for social justice; but now, she has realized that unless we all are free from oppression, none of us is really free. This program completely changed her perspective on life for the best. Even though she is a complete USC Trojan fan all the way, she will always have mad respect towards UCLA for supporting this IDEA program.
Elizabeth A. Herrera, 17, is an incoming freshman at Sacramento State University. A member of the council for two years, she joined the council because it introduced her to a world where issues in her community had a solution. In response to what she has learned with the council, she plans to pursue a career in journalism or teaching.
Isaac Jimenez, 18, will be a freshman attending California State University, Los Angeles this fall. A member of the council for three years, Isaac wanted to join this program to make sure that everyone gets the proper education needed to live and maintain a successful life and lifestyle. A fun fact about Isaac is that he tends to say random things in random situations.
Carlos Mejia, 19, is a young Latino/Hispanic male who grew up in Watts. He will be attending Santa Monica College in the fall. He has been participating in the council for four years now and the experience has helped him to always remember how he is entitled to a quality education. Joining the program was a choice that was very beneficial to him. He joined because it pushed him to think critically and learn to appreciate that his community is just as amazing as higher income areas. The passion he has is to help people by any means he can because he wants to share with his community the happiness he grew up with. This can show how even though Watts’ youth lack materialistic items, they know how to use what they have to do great things.
Zuri Morales, 18, just graduated from Wilson High School. She will be attending Los Angeles Community College this fall. This is her third summer with the council. She was interested in joining because she wanted to make a change in her school and her community and give a voice to those who don’t have one. She is involved in other programs like the council, such as her LIDR class at Wilson. She has very high hopes of one day enrolling at UCLA because ever since she started with the council she has set her heart on it.
Elizabeth Silva, 18, recently finished her first year at Santa Monica College. She has participated in the council for the past four years. She joined the council because she views this program as an opportunity to grow and continue to be pushed and challenged in many different ways. She is able to develop into a critical thinker and build networks with other participants and teachers. The council also opens many doors for her, and she is willing to walk through them. As a student at Santa Monica College, she plans to transfer to a four-year university, and UCLA is the school she would like to attend. In addition, growing up in a disenfranchised urban community, there has not and aren’t many or any spaces available for youth to voice their opinion and have a say on how they feel the quality of education is in our schools. There are not many critical spaces that help youth develop into community agents and critical thinkers and she believes that the council has provided a space where they can grow personally, have a voice, become community agents and do something about it. Something that has become her hobby and a passion is being able to create counter-media against the usual perceptions the media has placed on youth in urban communities. It is something that I have continued to do for the past five years.
Yaracet Villalobos, 18, will be a freshman at Wellesley College in the fall. A member of the council for two years, Yaracet was first interested in joining because she wanted to voice the opinions of those who are ignored in her school and community. Yaracet is hoping to travel to different countries through Wellesley’s study abroad program and wishes to study different cultures.