Cal Poly Pomona

Scholars - Cohort 09

Jessica Almeda

Jessica Almeda: A GEMS major, Jessica intends to obtain a master's degree in social work and start a halfway house for young women. Her goal is to eventually work with women in developing countries.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Anita Jain

Latoya Ambros

Latoya Ambrose: Latoya is a sociology major with an emphasis in criminology. She intends to earn a Ph.D. in public health and to advocate for universal health care.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Faye L. Wachs

Paola Beas

Paola Beas: Paola is a gender, ethnicity, and multicultural studies (GEMS) major with a concentration in Chicano studies and a minor in Spanish. On campus she is part of the McNair Scholars, GEMS club, and holds the social chair position for HaU (Hermanas Unidas). Paola is employed at Bienestar Human Services, a non-profit HIV/AIDS center which focuses on the well-being specifically of the Latino community. She is a first generation college student who advocates for social justice. Paola intends to pursue her Ph.D. and help people in ‘underdeveloped’ countries.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Anita Jain

Nicole Berry

Nicole Berry: Nicole, an animal science major, plans to obtain the dual degrees of D.V.M. and Ph.D. with an emphasis in chemistry and applications in veterinary medicine.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Francis X. Flores

David Chavezticas

David Chavezticas: David is a mechanical engineering major. He plans to obtain dual degrees of M.D. and Ph.D. with an emphasis in biomedical engineering.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Vilupanura Ravi

Jorge Contreras

Jorge Contreras: A political science major, Jorge plans to attend a law school that offers a joint doctorial degree in public policy and law.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Jill Hargis

Skye Esarcega

Skye Esarcega: Skye anticipates graduating in Spring 2009, earning a B.A. in sociology with an emphasis in social work. She plans to pursue a Ph.D in sociology, with special focus on sexuality, gender, and feminist theory. Skye is currenty interning for the Michi and Walter Weglyn Endowed Chair of Multicultural Studies, working to advance social justice through cultural programs and literacy. Skye's involvement with ACCESS, a peer group that mentors incoming freshmen and transfer students in the Department of Psychology and Sociology, parallels her aspirations to one day teach in the CSU system. In addition to her membership in Golden Key International Honour Society and internship with the Center for Violent Prevention & Women's Resources, Skye serves as the 2008-2009 Vice President of Recruiting for Alpha Kappa Delta International Sociology Honor Society.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Stacy K. McGoldrick


Cheyenne Granda: Cheyenne is a psychology major who plans to pursue a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Her research interests include poverty, women's issues, and the long-term effects of trauma.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Erika DeJonghe

Janelle Gross

Janelle Gross: Janelle is a senior at Cal Poly Pomona University, majoring in psychology. She is a member of Golden Key, McNair scholars Program, and currently services as the vice president of Psi Chi. She will graduate in June 2009. After graduating with her bachelor's degree, she plans on pursuing her Ph.D. in clinical psychology, specializing in childhood behavior disorders, developmental psychopathology, assessment, diagnosis, and classification of child disorders.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Susan N. Saiw

Annette Hernandez

Annette Hernandez: Majoring in agronomy with an emphasis in crop production and a minor in international marketing, Annette intends to pursue a doctoral degree in agricultural irrigation and water management.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Victor Wegrzyn

Lynda Lee

Lynda Lee: Lynda plans to attend graduate school to earn her doctorate in psychology. Her goal is to become a psychology professor. She is most interested in social psychology. Her research interests include stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination. In her spare time, Lynda loves to travel and spend time with her family and friends. She is an active member of the National Honor Society in Psychology, Psi Chi, and serves as the 2008-2009 Secretary. She is also historian for McNair Scholars Club, and a member of Golden Key Honor Society as well. Lynda is extremely grateful for the opportunities that McNair has given her. She will take these experiences, lessons, and knowledge with her as she enters the graduate world.


Faculty mentor: Dr. Bettina Casad

Trang Lu

Trang Lu: Trang is majoring in fine arts and biotechnology with a minor in chemistry. After high school, he worked in the entertainment industry for a few years, modeling 3D characters and creating animation. He is currently working on his biotechnology curriculum and expects to graduate and earn both degrees in Spring 2009. He plans to enter medical school and pursue his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees, specializing in emergency medicine.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Jill Adler-Moore

Oscar Marquez

Oscar Marquez: Oscar is a first generation college student, majoring in sociology and GEMS with an emphasis in Chicano studies. he plans to pursue his Ph.D. in Latin American history.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Enrique Ochoa

Gerardo Montano

Gerardo Montano: Gerardo, a senior majoring in chemical engineering, will pursue a doctorate degree in biochemical engineering. His goal is to find a more reliable and efficient artificial blood substitute.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Thuan K. Nguyen


Nancy Morkos: As a child, Nancy discovered her passion for animals. She is an animal science major and intends to pursue her D.V.M. and Ph.D. degrees, emphasizing microbiology as it applies to veterinary medicine.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Shelton E. Murinda


Rosa Portugal: Rosa, a third year student, plans on obtaining a master's degree in civil engineering and working in the field before pursuing a doctorate in Chicano studies to become a professor.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Enrique Ochoa

Andrea Nicole Serrato

Andrea Nicole Serrato: A gender, ethic, and multicultural studies major, Andrea is interested in pursuing her Ph.D. in anthropology with an emphasis in indigenous studies in Mesoamerican culture.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Enrique C. Ochoa

Josefina Wilhelm

Josefina Wilhelm: Josefina is interested in identity information within the Chicano community. Her goal is to achieve a Ph.D. in ethnic studies and teach at the university level.

Faculty mentor: Dr. S. Terri Gomez


Lisa Williams: Lisa begins working toward her Ph.D. in sociology at Ohio State University in the Fall 2008. She will research racial stratification with the goal of becoming a university professor.

Faculty mentor: Dr. Stacy K. McGoldrick