Glenda Vargas - ALearn Student, Teaching Assistant, and Future Teacher

For many high school graduates, going away to college can be daunting. But for first-generation students such as Glenda Vargas, of Mountain View, the leap was much more formidable. "It was super scary," said Vargas, 20, now a junior at Chapman University in Orange County. "When my mom calls and I try to tell her what I'm going through, it's really, really hard to explain." Her family didn't have any idea about things such as tough classes, dorm living, Greek life and her recent role as a resident-assistant overseeing a floor full of freshmen.
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Sal’s Journey to Graduate School


Catalyst to High  School and College Graduate Valeria Dominquez

Valeria Dominguez, an ALearn alum, is a graduate of Sonoma State University and has already accomplished her first goal – to run a nonprofit benefiting youth.
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Teaching Assistant Edgar Chavarria - TA Experience Creates the Teacher Pipeline

A graduate of Independence High School in San Jose, Edgar Chavarria devoted his high school years pursuing music rather than academics. He transferred to San José State University from San José City College and discovered another passion: becoming a teacher. As a teacher, he could help young people discover their potential, just like ALearn has helped him discover his.
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Teacher Yeny Rosales - A Valuable College Readiness Component

When the school day is finished and most teachers beginning to wrap up their day, Yeny Rosales gears up for her next shift as ALearn’s MAP+ teacher at Ocala Middle School. “My students and I enjoy staying after the regular school day for another class – we have fun learning together.”
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Catalyst Students Paola Cervantes and Glenda Vargas -  Motivated Close Friends

Paola Cervantes and Glenda Vargas are two very motivated and successful graduates of Los Altos High School who jointly attended the ALearn catalyst class together four years ago and are now in college. Paolo attends Cal State Northridge and Glenda is at Chapman University.
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Catalyst Student Esmeralda Galindo - From C's and D's to B's and A's

Even though I didn’t know the teachers from the Catalyst to High School/Summer Bridge Program they were still great. For home room I had Mr. Nguyen, a really cool and funny teacher. For Algebra 1, I had Mrs. Tran and she was a really helpful and patient teacher. Mr. Albers was the director of the program and I really didn’t get to meet him that much but he seemed to be a really good teacher to me.
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Catalyst Student Ana Jiménez - Math is Now Her Favorite Subject

Even though math wasn't my favorite subject in school coming into Catalyst, the program made me realize that math actually was my favorite subject. Over the summer I realized that math wasn't just numbers and equations, but a subject that is really fun to learn. Also, the teachers were great and the director of the program was very helpful.
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MAP Student Sara Palacios - 12/12: A Fraction to Love

"Double wow" was what both Sara Palacios, a 7th grader from the Herman Intermediate School, and her mother felt after she was accelerated to Pre-Algebra earlier this year. Sara's acceleration was a result of her participation in the ALearn Math Acceleration Program (MAP) last summer.
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Catalyst Student Milena Lacayo - Leader and Problem-Solver

Milena is a very engaging and creative Junior at Los Altos High School who developed leadership, problem solving and math skills while attending ALearn’s Catalyst to High School program two years ago. These skills increased her confidence and enabled a much easier transition from 8th grade to freshman year. It also pushed her into taking AP courses during her sophomore year and ignited her passion for creative writing and the desire to become an English teacher.
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Catalyst Teaching Assistant Katherine Hamby - First-Generation College Grad Connects with Students and Parents

As a Catalyst Teaching Assistant, Katherine Hamby was amazed at the huge improvement in her middle school students’ math scores from the start of the program. Besides their marked improvements in math, the students increased their classroom participation and exhibited high enthusiasm during the exercises. Katherine thoroughly enjoyed working with the classroom teacher, Nancy Johnson, who encouraged her to contribute to the instruction and to deliver her own 30-minute lessons.
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MAP Teaching Assistant Greg Hambrecht - "Amazing and Precious" Moments

Greg’s passion for education began when his high school English teacher inspired him to want to make a difference in the world through the power of teaching. He began by correcting papers during summers at Sacred Heart High School, and when he saw the ad for the ALearn Teaching Assistant (TA) for MAP while at Santa Clara University, he immediately applied. He was offered the position on the spot and worked at Oak Grove the first summer and Evergreen at McKinley the second summer.
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