Zaira Sepulveda Ochoa
Tutor

Hi! My name is Zaira Sepulveda Ochoa and I am from East Palo Alto, CA. I am currently a student at UC Merced but I will be attending UC Berkeley to complete my teaching credential. I am a senior with an Environmental Systems Science major with a minor in Natural Science Education Credential. My main goal is to become a high school science teacher and motivate students to attend college. I was born in Apatzingan, Mexico, and immigrated here with my family for a better future and education. I am a first-generation college student and I definitely understand how hard it is for students like me when seeking help. The reason I joined Elevate is to encourage other students to pursue their dreams and let them know that they are not alone in their educational journey. I also want to help students understand the importance of higher education and all of the ways it can open up more doors for them in the future.

Munro Le-Truong
Tutor
Alex Tochihuitl
Tutor

Hello, my name is Alex Tochihuitl. I am a junior at Santa Clara University and am pursuing a Neuroscience major as well as a Philosophy minor. I was born and raised in Mountain View, so the Bay Area has always been my home and I really cherish that.  I joined Elevate because I always wanted to give back to my community and Elevate gave me that opportunity. A lot of the kids I tutor remind me of a younger me and it is really heartwarming to see them exploring what they are interested in. My goal is to someday start a nonprofit organization, but first I am planning to develop a career in self improvement, more specifically adopting a healthy lifestyle and staying active for a more prosperous life in the future.

Miriam Rodriguez
Tutor

Hi! My name is Miriam Rodriguez and I am a first-year at Foothill College in pursuit to transfer to a UC as a Political Science major. I am a first-generation student, and pursuing higher education means a lot to me and my family. When I started the first grade, my English skills were below average compared to my peers, since I was raised with Spanish as my primary language. Therefore, I required extra help and attention to reach my academic goals. Thanks to the tutors and the teachers that always set time apart to help me individually, I am the student that I am today. The trust and patience that they had with me pushed me to challenge myself and be more confident in my academic journey throughout middle school and high school. That is why I joined Elevate because I have the first-hand experience of how much tutoring can help. It is an amazing way to help out my community and be able to give back the same support that I had growing up. In the future, I want to be involved in an activist Latino Organization to push more resources and support for Latinos low-income households. My dream is to be able to work somewhere in the field of politics, or in government to push a progressive agenda. The possibilities are endless, and I can’t wait to see what the future has for me.

Kimberly Fernandez Pedraza
Tutor

Hi! My name is Kimberly Fernandez and I am a current senior at Santa Clara University majoring in Ethnic Studies & Art History. With my majors, I hope to one day highlight the artworks of nonwhite artists and bring a platform where they can be praised to the same height as the New York School artists. I was born and raised in Napa, CA with an immigrant single mother. As a child of a parent who lacked formal education, education and pursuing a college degree were always emphasized to me from a young age. My three siblings and I have all been very fortunate to currently be enrolled in higher education and we attribute our success to the hard work our mom taught us. As someone who has always had a desire to motivate students the same way my mom motivated me, I decided to apply for Elevate. Elevate has shown me ways to further develop my tutoring skills to efficiently work for the student, however, it has also allowed me to form impactful connections with students who share my background. Through this program, I can give back to a community that I have always wanted to help in and form relationships with students who also shared my struggle.

Dhruv Pais
Tutor

Hello! My name is Dhruv Pais, I am a junior at Santa Clara University pursuing a double-major in Mathematics and Economics. I grew up in Pune, India where I finished High School before moving to the Bay Area to continue my education. Having to move to a whole new education system in a whole new country really expanded my worldview, while simultaneously showing me how important it is to have someone you can throw questions at when feeling lost.  Elevate gives me the chance to help those in need, and I am extremely grateful for that. Academics aside, I absolutely love the outdoors and will take any chance to go on a backpacking or rock climbing trip (and will talk about it until you make me stop).

Chloe Tat
Tutor, Ivy Cheng Fellow

Hello! My name is Chloe Tat, and I’m currently a second year student at Santa Clara, majoring in marketing and minoring in Japanese. I was born and raised in San Jose, and a first generation college student. I think it’s super important for students to have the opportunity to have the support and resources  to succeed academically and in life, and Elevate provides that opportunity to so many students! When I’m not tutoring or studying, I like to bake and travel (when it's safe!).

Matthew Tran
Tutor

Hi! My name is Matthew. I am a second year business student at Santa Clara University. I was born and raised in San Jose. Some of the things I enjoy are skateboarding, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and good food. As a first generation college student, I know what it feels like to feel lost within the education system. I see it first hand with my younger cousins. I joined Elevate because I want to be the support that I needed when I was in high school.

Guadalupe Peralta
Tutor, Ivy Cheng Fellow

Hello everyone my name is Guadalupe Peralta. A little bit about myself, I am currently a second year at San Jose State University, pursuing a psychology degree. My life goal is to one day have my own private practice as a psychologist. I am a proud member of a multicultural Sorority, Sigma Alpha Zeta, which focuses on women empowerment and it has given me the opportunity to make my college experience unforgettable. A little bit about my background, I was born and raised in San Jose,CA. I come from a low income family and I am hoping that through Elevate I am able to help those that may not have the support system at home. 

Maily Juarez
Tutor, Ivy Cheng Fellow

Hi! My name is Maily Juarez and I am a first-year at San Jose State University majoring in Mathematics Preparation for Teaching. I was born in Morelos, Mexico, and moved to the United States when I was one year old. I am the oldest sibling with two younger sisters and I am the first to attend college out of my whole family. I want to become a mathematics teacher so once I heard about Elevate, I knew it was the right fit for me since I will be able to gain experience for the future. Not only is Elevate allowing me to do what I love, but it also helps me pay for college to achieve my dream to be the first in my family to graduate college.

Montserrat Sanchez Lopez
Tutor, Ivy Cheng Fellow

Hi! My name is Montse and I’m a third-year at Jose State University. I am currently majoring in psychology in hopes of eventually obtaining a masters degree in educational counseling. My goal is to become an academic advisor for underrepresented students. I am the first generation in my family to pursue a college degree. As a low-income, first-generation student I faced many challenges to get to where I am today. I received a lot of help from mentors, advisors, teachers, and tutors along the way. I hope that I can be of much help to other students who face similar  challenges as I did. I joined Elevate in hopes of giving back to my community by helping other students succeed in their academics.

Dwight Johnson
Tutor

My name is Dwight Johnson and I am a first-generation junior at Santa Clara University studying Biomedical Engineering. I was born and raised in Lancaster, CA. I am a transfer student and transferred to Santa Clara University from a small school in Indiana. I joined elevate with the hope of giving back to the community and helping students who may be having trouble with schooling or learning. My dream is to go to medical school and eventually become a Cardiovascular Surgeon.

Justin Vuu
Tutor

Justin Vuu here! Currently, I am a Sophomore at San Jose State University majoring in Packaging and minoring in Nutrition. My goal is to learn how to design packages for food products to be more sustainable in the hopes of better helping the planet. I am a first-generation student trying to gain a higher education to be able to care for my parents who never had the chance to attend a university. I decided to join Elevate because I used to get tutored back in middle school. I know that I would not be where I am today without the support of my tutors. They believed in my abilities as a student even when it took me longer to comprehend the materials than my peers. Now being a tutor myself, I show my tutees that getting help is not something to be ashamed of and that I am here to guide them towards success. Elevate is a program based around community, mentorship, and corroboration that has only led me to grow better as an individual.

Estefany Meza
Tutor

Hello! I am Estefany Meza and I am a third-year transfer student at Santa Clara University. I am majoring in Political Science with a concentration in Pre-Law and minoring in Ethnic Studies. I was born and raised in San Jose, CA. As a first-generation college student, my parents are my biggest motivation. I am fortunate enough to count on a strong support system throughout my college journey. Elevate has helped me build the skills to help tutor, motivate, and support other students in my community, including my younger siblings. For this reason, I am grateful to be a part of Elevate. Through Elevate, I have the opportunity to be a part of a support system for all of my tutees.

Jose Avelar
Tutor

Hello! My name is Jose Avelar, and I am a first semester nursing student at California State University, Stanislaus. I was born and raised in Mexico and came to the United States when I was 12 years old. I have been interested in the medical field since I was little, which has led me to pursue a career to become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist. As a child, I never had guidance and support to get an education. I am honored to be part of Elevate Tutoring, and to have the opportunity to guide and support youths that have similar backgrounds. I strongly believe that providing youths with the tools and guidance is imperative to their academic success.