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Fall 2017 CCDE Fellows

Rocio Garcia

Cal Class of 2018

Rocio Garcia is a fourth-year student at the University of California, Berkeley. Originally from El Monte in California, Rocio came to Berkeley to study Political Science, with specializations in American politics and international relations. She also takes an interest in studying history and Latin. Her passion is helping underserved communities and she hopes to use her education to that end. As an aspiring lawyer, she is interested in supporting or creating a non-profit organization dedicated to providing free/low-cost legal services, assisting people in finding employment, and supporting youth in the pursuit of (higher) education. Her interest in non-profit work comes from her recent internship with Inside the Living Room at the East Bay Sanctuary Covenant, a legal non-profit organization dedicated to advocating for and protecting refugee rights. There she teaches asylees and community members enough English to get them through their everyday life, assists them in their applications for asylum and citizenship, and provides information on healthcare, social services, and human and civil rights and liberties. As an ILR intern, she was a volunteer in a pro bono U.S. citizenship application workshop for low-income, minority persons in the Bay Area. She has also worked with Raices, one of the multicultural centers on campus, to inform and encourage high school students to pursue higher education by demystifying the application and financial aid process. While in Washington, D.C., Rocio plans on interning for an organization that focuses on community development and education, with an emphasis on legal rights and issues. 

Viviana Morales

Cal Class of 2018

Viviana Morales is a third year student at UC Berkeley majoring in Political Science and minoring in Chicano Studies. She was born and raised in a small town, Carpentaria, CA that is near Santa Barbara. Growing up in a Latino household, she remembers being introduced to politics when she heard of the Arizona Law SB1070. SB1070 caused a commotion in her Latino community, but it also fueled her curiosity in understanding immigration policy and politics, therefore shaping her educational goals of wanting to major in political science.

Throughout her first year in college, she knew she wanted to pursue a career in the political science field, but did not know what exact career she wanted. She knew she needed to be proactive and start exploring different career paths that would allow her to get a glimpse of real life politics. After taking her very first Chicano Studies course during Summer Bridge she discovered she wanted to pursue politics, and at the same time push for policies that would allow her to make a difference in her Latino community, and other communities of color. As a first generation student, daughter of immigrant parents, and woman of color it is her intersectional identities that fuel her interest in policy and politics. On campus she has been a part of Berkeley’s Educational Opportunities Program Intake Internship which aims to serve first generation, low income, underrepresented students. Thanks to the services provided in this program, she has come to visualize herself graduating from UC Berkeley as well as serve the next generation of EOP students.

During the summer she has been proactive, seeking internships that would allow her to be of service to her community. She has held internships in Congresswoman Lois Capps’ District Office; in Voto Latino, which allowed her to bring knowledgeable information to her Latino community just in time for the 2016 Presidential Elections; and in our state’s capitol in State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson’s Office. While in Washington D. C. she hopes to learn more about media and politics, and what impact they have on communities of color. Read her story.

Marie Pichay

Cal Class of 2018

Marie Pichay is a rising senior at UC Berkeley majoring in Sustainable Environmental Design with minors in City Planning and Geospatial Information Systems & Technology. She is a first-generation, low-income Latina from Los Angeles. After moving to the Bay Area for college, Marie realized the stark differences in quality of life between hers and that of her peers. She became interested in learning more about these inequalities and the structural causes behind them in order to build equitable, sustainable, and healthy communities. Marie also recognizes the need to incorporate lived experience and community input in the decision-making process. Professionally, Marie is interested in transportation planning, community development, and urban data analytics. Next semester in Washington, D.C., Marie hopes to gain experience and mentorship that will help build her career.  Read her story.