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CESCaL

CESCaL

3rd ANNUAL
Supporting Access to Higher Education for
Immigrant & Undocumented Students
FOR K-12 SCHOOL COUNSELORS AND COLLEGE ACCESS PARTNERS

Conference Committee

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Trish Hatch, Ph.D. - Execute Director and Conference Chair 

Dr. Hatch is a Professor and the Founding Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in School Counseling and Leadership (CESCaL) in the College of Education at SDSU.  Under her leadership, CESCaL has provided trainings and national conferences to support opportunity and access for underrepresented students. Dr. Hatch is a best selling author, frequent keynote speaker, and consultant to schools and districts nationwide. She serves as thought leader in school counseling for The White House and the US Department of Education. Dr. Hatch co-lead the organization and planning for the  “invitation only” White House Convening on School Counseling and Post-secondary Success held at San Diego State University in November 2014.  Dr. Hatch is the recipient multiple awards including the American School Counseling Association (ASCA) "Lifetime Achievement Award" and the "Excellence in Education Award” for improving the field of education and service to students by the National Association of College Admission Counseling (NACAC). Previous winners of this prestigious award include First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama, and Senator Tom Harkin.  
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Diana Camilo, Ed.D - Coordinator of Special Projects and Conference Chair 

Dr. Camilo earned her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Rochester, her M.S. in Counseling & Human Development with a Concentration in School Counseling from the Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester and her Ed.D. in Counseling Psychology from Argosy University. Dr. Camilo has over fifteen years of experience in serving families and children in school based and clinical settings. Dr. Camilo is experienced in implementing psychosocial, academic, therapeutic and crisis interventions and support within the K-12 setting. Dr. Camilo has managed school-based and special education teams to identify and implement educational supports for students. As an administrator for Chicago Public Schools, Dr. Camilo provided district-wide planning, management and the evaluation of programs and policies to support and sustain the implementation of school counseling programs throughout the district. Dr. Camilo serves on the California College Application Campaign Steering Committee. Dr. Camilo has also taught at National Louis University in Chicago and currently serves as the Co-Director of the School Counseling Master’s program at San Diego State University.

 Anahi Amador

Anahi Amador 

Anahi Amador is currently a graduate student in the San Diego State University's School Counseling program. She was born and raised in Tijuana, Mexico, and has been residing in California since 2011. Living in both countries has given Anahi a broad perspective of the needs and strengths of the Latinx immigrant community, as well as a deep passion for supporting this community strive in the United States while upholding its foreign values and traditions. Anahi is currently interning at Mission Middle School in Escondido, where she works hand in hand with the school counselor to learn how to best assist students in the academic, career and social/emotional domains. Her previous experience involves advocating for foster youth through Voices for Children CASA of Monterey County, and developing and implementing prevention programs and social skills workshops to at-risk K-12 students through DIF, the Mexican equivalent to the Department of Social Services.


 Arella Sidransky

Arella Sidransky

Arella Sidransky has a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology with a minor in Counseling and Social Change from San Diego State University. She is currently attending SDSU to receive her Master's degree in School Counseling. She is interning at Edison Elementary School as a School Counseling Trainee. She hopes to empower students to achieve their academic, personal/social, and career goals.

 Crystal King

Crystal King

Crystal King received her B.A in Human Development and minor in Education Studies from the University of California, San Diego in June 2017. She is currently a 1st year student at San Diego State working on her masters in School Counseling. Crystal has worked various positions that have contributed to her passion for student advocacy and social justice. Her passion also comes from her own experience as a low-income first generation college student, and has made it her goal to provide all students equitable access to the information and resources they need to be successful in and out of the school setting. She has experience working with students in the K-12 setting and undergraduate students. She currently works at Lincoln High School as a Lead College Readiness Coach for San Diego’s California Student Opportunity and Access Program (Cal-SOAP). She assists high school seniors in their college and career planning, which includes applying for financial aid, working on college applications, and more. In addition to working at a local San Diego high school, Crystal is a school counseling intern at Euclid Elementary in City Heights. She hopes to inspire all students from different walks of life to be lifelong learners.


 Cynthia Jackson

Cynthia Jackson 

Cynthia Jackson has a B.A. in History and a B.A. in English and American Literature from Brandeis University. She is currently a first year graduate student in SDSU's School Counseling program and interns at Porter North Elementary within San Diego Unified District. She is passionate about helping students find ways to navigate our culturally diverse world and improve the communities they live in. She wants all students to have the academic and emotional support they require as they prepare for higher education and their careers. 

 Eric Cruz


Eric Cruz 

Eric Cruz is a current grad school student at SDSU and will obtain his Master’s in School Counseling in 2019.  He attended CSU San Marcos where he gained much interest in social justice issues leading to a double-major, acquiring his Bachelor’s in Sociology and Criminology & Justice Studies. This education laid the foundation for functioning in a diverse society, being able to comprehend injustices, as well as being an advocate for equity. After Eric graduated, he gained experience working as a case manager serving at-risk youth in Escondido, CA. This, along with his prior educational experiences made him passionate towards empowering the youth. Once he completes the Master’s program at SDSU he hopes to become a high school counselor.

 Jay Villafuerte


 

Jay Villafuerte

Jay Villafuerte personifies a story of courage and resiliency. His family escaped many social injustices in Mexico only to encounter similar oppression when they relocated to San Diego’s inner-city. As a young teenager, Mr. Villafuerte fell into the culture of the streets and began to cope with his problems by affiliating with a local gang. Fortunately, he transformed his life early on in high school and earned a full-ride scholarship to Point Loma Nazarene University. In 2009, he became a first-generation college graduate with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. As an educated man of color, he is cognizant of the fact that without positive role models and services, marginalized children do not have an equitable chance of attending college.

Mr. Villafuerte now serves as the President for the Reality Changers Foundation which annually awards over $25,000 in scholarship to economically disadvantaged youth. He is passionate about social justice, diversity and inclusion, and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in School Counseling from San Diego State University. Mr. Villafuerte has contributed to many on-campus initiatives at SDSU. He is the Vice President of the School Counselor Graduate Student Association, a member of the Community Resources sub-committee responsible for the School Counseling department’s Day of Action, and is the DREAMer Center liaison for the Center for Excellence in School Counseling and Leadership’s annual conference. Lastly, Mr. Villafuerte has become a research assistant for Dr. Joey Estrada’s project entitled: A Mixed-Methods Evaluation of the Break It To Make It Program for Formerly Incarcerated Students at Los Angeles City College. Mr. Villafuerte has made a lifelong commitment to serve high-need students in under-resourced communities, and he is currently a school counseling intern at Euclid Elementary, in City Heights.

 Jessica Stroke

Jessica Stroke

Jessica Stroke is a first-year graduate student in the School Counseling program at San Diego State. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy at Long Beach State. In Long Beach, she was a mentor and tutor for underserved students. In San Diego, she has worked at the Monarch School with students impacted by homelessness as a tutor, substitute teacher, and with the school counselor and the college and career center. She also works with NAMI to fight the stigma around mental health conditions by giving presentations to High School students regarding warning signs, statistics, and resources. Currently, Jessica is interning at the Casita Center for Technology, Science, and Math, which is an elementary school in the Vista Unified School District. Jessica’s goal is to continue learning how to better support students in reaching their academic, social/emotional and career goals. 

 

Juan Ugarte

Juan Ugarte

Juan Ugarte is a first-year graduate student in the School Counseling program at San Diego State University. Juan wants to become a school counselor in order to help and support all students accomplish their academic and career goals. Juan currently works for the SDSU Upward Bound program as an Academic Advisor assisting first generation and low-income high school students become college bound. Juan is currently a school-counseling trainee at Edison Elementary School in the San Diego Unified School District. Juan strives to continue learning how he can better support all students reach their goals.
 Lezya Weglarz

Lezya Weglarz 

Lezya Weglarz is currently a second-year graduate student in the School Counseling program at SDSU and a Graduate Research Assistant for the Center for Excellence in School Counseling and Leadership (CESCaL). She is also the Southern California Emerging Leader for the California Association of School Counselors.

This is Lezya's second year serving on the conference committee for the Supporting Access to Higher Education for Immigrant and Undocumented Students conference hosted by CESCaL. Lezya’s strong support for equitable access to higher education for underrepresented populations is based, in part, on her own experience as a first-generation college student of Salvadoran immigrant parents.

Lezya received her Bachelor’s degree from UCLA. Prior to starting graduate school, Lezya helped families access resources for their children with disabilities in her role as the clinic coordinator and parent liaison for a speech therapy clinic in San Diego County. Today, she continues to serve these families on the Community Advisory Committee of the North Coastal Consortium for Special Education as a parent representative for San Marcos Unified School District.

Lezya’s passion to empower ALL students, families, and professionals as a future school counselor has been enhanced by her personal experiences as a first-generation college student, dedicated advocate of special education, and as a mother. 


 Natalie Weinstein

Natalie Weinstein

Natalie Weinstein is a second year graduate student in the school counseling program at SDSU. She is currently interning in the school counseling department at Eastlake High School. She advocates for students and is passionate about youth empowerment. She is thankful for the opportunity to be a part of the team planning the CESCal conference Supporting Access to Higher Education for Immigrant and Undocumented Students. Through this opportunity she hopes to continue to learn how to best support students both academically and socially. 

 Tessa Leon

Tessa Leon

Tessa Leon is in her second year of graduate school at San Diego State University in the school counseling program. Before deciding to pursue a master’s degree she worked for six years helping low-income adults find employment. As a first generation student herself, she knows first-hand how much support is needed to achieve success. Working with the CESCaL organization offers an opportunity to help spread its mission of promoting excellence in the field of school counseling.

 

 

Contact Us:

Dr. Diana Camilo
Coordinator of Special Projects
Conference Co-Chair 

events@cescal.org