Katherine Zevallos Pastor (She/Her/Hers)
Dream Center Coordinator
Hello! I was born in La Molina Peru and moved to the U.S. at the age of ten. I began my academic journey at Orange Coast College. Then transferred to Cypress College where I found a community that empowered me to co-create the Dream Catcher's Club. After two years I transferred to California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) where I earned a Bachelor's degree in Human Services with a concentration in Mental Health. I found CSUF to be a home and learned about the field of Student Affairs. My involvement as a mentor for scholars, a Titan Delegate in outreach, a Resident Counselor for the EOP Summer Bridge Program and as a NASPA NUFP Fellow, ignited my passion to work with underrepresented students.
Upon graduation, I was selected to serve as the Program Assistant for Career Services at The State University of New York at Albany. After completing my time there, I pursued a graduate degree in College Counseling & Student Development from Azusa Pacific University (APU). While at APU, I served as the graduate assistant for Local Engagement at the Center for Student Action and for TRIO Student Support Services at the Undergraduate Academic Success Center. In addition, I was a Success Guide at Chaffey College where I had the opportunity to serve non-traditional students through academic advising and workshops. I have developed programs and workshops to support undocumented students in my various roles. My research and areas of interest focus on the intersectionality of identities. I am the first and only person in my family to receive a graduate degree, which continues to be my motivating force in empowering others. In my spare time, I enjoy writing, kayaking, spending time with my loved ones and eating pizza.
Selina Jaimes (She/Her/Hers)
Dream Center Student Lead
Hi! My name is Selina, and I am a first-generation Undocumented student. I came to the United States in 1998 when I was 2 years old. I graduated from Huntington Park High School in 2013 with high honors. After high school, I went straight to Cypress College to work on my general Ed. As a first-generation student it took me a little while to figure out what I wanted to major in so it took me 5 years to transfer. But during my time, I was part of the Puente Program, EOPS program, and STEM Program at my community college. I have conducted three summer research experiences at CSUF with Dr. Gina Passante in Physics Education in 2016, at UCSD with Dr. Nicholas Boechler in the Mechanical and Aerospace engineering department in 2018 and another at UCSD with Dr. Frances Contreras is educational studies in 2019. I have mentored other students and presented at board meetings, foundations, orientations, welcome day to 400 professors and administrators, workshop, and conferences. I share my story to inspire others and to show how Luchistas Latinos are!
I graduated from Cypress College with honors and 4 Associates in Pre-Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and Liberal Arts in Math and Science in 2019. I was selected to be the 1st Presidential Scholar for the Science Engineering and Mathematics Department at commencement. After completing my Bachelor's in Mechanical Engineering at Cal Poly SLO, I will continue my educational journey by getting a Master's Degree in Education. I would like to be a STEM counselor for undocumented students in the long run because I know first hand how impactful it is to have a counselor that you can relate to. In my spare time, I like to go hiking, watch movies, beach, volleyball, and eating.
Christopher Amaro (He/Him/His)
Dream Center Student Lead
Hello! My name is Christopher Amaro and I am a first generation college student. I was born in San Francisco and grew up in the Peninsula region of the Bay Area. Being a first generation college student has had its obstacles and triumphs, in my early years I did not comprehend the purpose of school and thus had a very poor academic background. After high school I decided I wanted to study engineering, I took 4 years at Skyline College, then transferred to Cal Poly for Civil Engineering. While at Skyline College I was part of the EOPS, TRiO and Puente Programs. To date, I have had the privilege of engaging in a variety of leadership and academic roles. At my community college I was a student assistant and supplemental instructor during the 16-17 academic year, I was in charge of working with groups of 15 students or more to reinforce mathematics concepts. During the summer of 2017 I conducted structural engineering research at San Francisco State University, the summer of 2018 I interned with Pacific Gas and Electric Company in their gas operations division, this past summer of 2019 I interned with a civil engineering design firm, BKF Engineers, in the Bay Area. During my last year at Skyline College I was an officer with American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) San Francisco Younger Members Forum. I was in charge of the chapter website and individually organizing outreach events for college students in the Bay. During the 18-19 academic year at Poly, I was the VP of Community Service for the on campus student chapter of ASCE, where I individually organized a total of nine community service events that gave back to the greater SLO county area. In 2018 I also had the honor of presenting my structural research at the American Society for Engineering Education conference in Boulder Colorado!
After college I will be entering the civil engineering industry, working towards obtaining my professional engineers licensure (PE). I am mostly intrigued with the water resources, transportation and the environmental aspects within civil engineering. I would love to be involved with work that not only benefits the infrastructure our society heavily depends on but also done in a way that is mindful and respectful of the environment around it. When I’m not being academic or conducting work with an organization, you can find me outside running the mountains in SLO county. I had a great time running my first marathon this summer and have a few half marathons under my belt, I will happily discuss any questions/topics about running! But beware, I may talk your ear off. I also really enjoy spending time with family and friends, snapping the occasional photo, skateboarding, listening to fire music, reading and learning how to make new recipes vegan. I welcome any and all questions, we’re all trying to get through different obstacles in life, and I believe the best way to figure out problems is through open discussion