Campus Vote Project Democracy Fellows

California

Kaede Hamilton

DeAnza College

Kaede was born in Cupertino California and upon graduation from high school she attended the University of California Santa Cruz where she holds two bachelor’s degrees in psychology and legal studies. She then decided to continue her education at a community college where she became very involved in local politics. There, she is a Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACC) student intern, a TA for a Poli 1 class, and a volunteer for several student organizations.

Mako Mori

DeAnza College

Mako Mori is a second year student at De Anza College in Cupertino, California. She is a declared Political Science major and is extremely passionate about student activism work, in order to promote change of inequalities in the U.S. Some of her passions include traveling, eating Thai food, volunteering, cooking, and going on spontaneous adventures. Mako strongly believes in allowing everyone the access to bring democracy into action. She is a committed and dedicated individual, who is excited to bring this Campus Vote Project to reality. Mako currently resides in San Jose, CA.

Lynette Quintero

Los Angeles Pierce College

Lynette Quintero was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. Being a first generation Mexican-American minority, she is an advocate within the community seeking to evoke empowerment for minorities and young adults. Overcoming the adversities she grew up living through and witnessing, she aspires to achieve change while influencing the community. She is currently a mentor and tutor for the homeless youth of Los Angeles, as well as a lead discussion leader for the Communication department’s student workshop that helps the development of communication skills for English as Second Language students at her college. With her beliefs, she actively pursues to diminish the gap of injustices faced in society while enhancing the growth of individuals with opportunities and guidance within the community. Becoming a democracy fellow with Campus Vote Project, she is passionate about empowering her peers with engagement and education on democratic participation. Today, her influence continues to impact her peers and the society she aims to improve.


Jen Mikiska

Los Angeles Pierce College

Jen Mikiska is a student at Pierce Community College. She is pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication with an emphasis in non-profit and business communication. Jen worked as a Catering and Sales Manager and as an Artist Relations Coordinator before returning to school. Now, when she’s not studying, Jen volunteers for organizations in her community that help those in need in an attempt to understand the needs of a community and how to implement plausible solutions to complex issues.  She is thrilled to be working with the Campus Vote Project during this exciting 2016 election season. Jen Mikiska resides in West Hills California.

Amy Min Young Chong

East Los Angeles College

Amy Min Young Chong is a sophomore at East Los Angeles College, ELAC, planning to transfer to USC next fall. She is the president of the John Delloro Social Justice Club which focuses on social justice issues that affect the campus and the community overall. Her main mission is to help ELAC send more transfer students into a 4-year institution and help minorities, particularly Latinos, to gain a higher education to pursue their dreams. Aside from school, she has multiple hobbies that she likes to do in her free time. She plays golf, loves nature and hiking, enjoys journal-ing, takes pictures, and loves to color in ‘adult’ coloring books.

Lana Giacose

Los Angeles Mission College

Lana is a full-time student at Los Angeles Mission College, double majoring in business finance and psychology. She plans on transferring for fall 2017 in hopes of furthering her education at a high caliber institution and eventually earning a Master’s Degree in international business. She has a multicultural advantage as she was raised in Brazil and is fluent in Portuguese. Her fascination for different cultures has made her take an interest to learn Spanish and Italian. Lana has always been very involved in her community by volunteering at orphanages, nonprofit theater programs, and animal shelters. She believes in teamwork toward a common goal of improving our community for the better in the future.


Metzti Amaya

Los Angeles Mission College

Metzti is student at LAMC. Her Associate’s in Arts degrees will be in Chicano/a studies and drawing/painting. She is also the M.E.Ch.A president at the college. She has always been surrounded and a part of community work and organizing through her parents. They taught her the importance of fighting for what she believes is right and working as a unit to accomplish a the goal. She believes the only limitations someone has, are those placed by oneself. She wants to be a part of change by educating, getting more involved and getting the community involved.

Jose Pedraza

Los Angeles Harbor College

Jose currently attends Los Angeles Harbor College. He is a STEM major with an ambition for politics. As an intern for AFT 1521, Jose has become very active in the political platform. He is ecstatic to be working with Campus Vote Project because he can influence his generation to become more involved and encourage their voices to be heard. In addition to being politically inclined, he also volunteers in his community and continues to strive for success along with his peers.

Estefanny Morales

Los Angeles Harbor College

Estefanny Morales and I am happy to be part of this team. I graduated in the spring with three majors and am taking the last classes to receive my final degree in political science. I encourage my fellow teammates to go above and beyond because, they can exceed in anything. One of my hobbies is reading and analyzing information from any source. I can’t wait to see where this opportunity will take me, if it can be an eye opener for others. I can’t wait to apply it for others to see. I would also like to talk about the person who inspired me to go above and beyond; my older sister Patsy. She has always worked hard to prove to herself and others that anyone can exceed any expectations (her motto that inspired me), “Don’t tell me the sky is the limit when there are footprints on the moon.”


Matthew Mooreland

Los Angeles Trade Technical College

Matthew is a student at Los Angeles Trade Technical College (LATTC). He is studying supply water technology, and plans to continue his education in either civil, chemical, or environmental engineering. Matthew is the founder of the LATTC chapter of National Society of Black Engineers. Matthew is also an intern for AFT 1521, where he has been exposed to activism through organized labor and political campaigning. Aside from studies, he is a workshop assistant who helps students obtain their GED through in-class assistance with math and English. In his free time, Matthew is understanding the hardship of living with a cat.

Cathy Diaz

West Los Angeles College

Cathy Diaz is a second year West Los Angeles College student. She is a Political Science major with an emphasis in Public Administration and is working to transfer to Cal State Long Beach or Cal State Los Angeles. A veteran of the United States Army, she served 8 years as a Human Resource Specialist while stationed overseas in Germany. She received numerous awards and accommodations from commanders and senior leaders for her work with multinational coalitions. As President of WLAC’s West Veterans Club (2015), along with the efforts of the West Veterans Club, faculty, and staff, she worked with campus administration to establish a Veterans Resources Office to better assist student veteran enrollment to West Los Angeles College and connect them to local veteran organizations in the greater Los Angeles area. She is now an an intern of the American Federation of Teachers Local 1521. Her work with West Veterans Club and the AFT have shown her the importance of having lasting systems on campus to inform students of voter registration.

Sarah Contreras

West Los Angeles College

Sarah  is a political science major at West Los Angeles College planning to transfer to Columbia University in the fall of 2017. She is an active member of the Associated Student Organization tending to their public relations and pioneering the new bi-monthly newsletter. She has served as a Southern California student representative for Rotary International uniting high school students through service events and special initiatives to raise funds for third world countries in need. Sarah is a community leader and organizer at Solidarity House of the South, an autonomous community-led collective providing educational workshops reinforcing the principles of decolonization, feminism, social justice, and community nurturing. Here, she spends most of her time learning, loving, building, and engaging in necessary dialogue with her inter-generational and inter-sectional community members. She treasures live music, poetry, traveling, and megaphones. Sarah will work to register her contemporaries to vote and wants to continue to raise political awareness throughout this election and in her future career.


Javier Lopez Quintana

East Los Angeles College

Javier is majoring in political science, journalism and minoring in filmmaking. He is an intern for the American Federation of Teachers where he focuses on informing students and community members about the political process, how they can become more involved, and registering them to vote. He writes for ELAC’s Campus News where he informs students about important propositions that will be on the ballot, political events and resources available to them. He is currently working on a documentary that will portray the negative effects of gentrification on low income communities. He also loves to encourage everyone around him and loves gaining knowledge.

Eduardo J. Vargas

East Los Angeles College

Eduardo comes from East Los Angeles where he attended school at ELAC and received an associate’s degree and certificates in business and accounting. He worked in various nonprofit organizations working with the community and organizing with local representatives in the interest of the community. After three years at Elac, he transferred to California State University, Long Beach where he obtained a degree in finance. He is hoping to finish an MPA and begin working in the community.

Daniel Ortiz

East Los Angeles College

Daniel is a political science major and on his journey to transferring to a four-year institution. Daniel likes to hang out with his friends and go to  concerts, restaurants, or just having a chat. He is a proud intern for the AFT 1521 program that allows him to make a difference such as registering youth to vote. He believes when people vote, they decide what officials they want in office and what propositions they wish to pass instead of permitting others to do so for them. Your vote, your voice.


Mariana Jimenez

Los Angeles Valley College

Mariana is a second year Los Angeles Valley College student, who will be applying to transfer to numerous UCs this fall. She will be pursuing her B.A in communications studies. Mariana is currently the Social Media Coordinator at her school, so she is gaining the experience she needs for her dream career in public relations. When Mariana is not studying or working, she enjoys hiking with her dog Otto and volunteering for the LA based nonprofit Trash Free Earth.

Saleem Moinuddin

Los Angeles Valley College

Saleem is a student at Valley College who has been an AFT intern for a year. As an intern, he contributes to many efforts such as wage theft awareness, and the predatorial banking practices with customer accounts that they held their workers responsible for. He is also the former Commissioner of Political Affairs in ASU where he helped his college apply for a grant that will incentivize reduced textbook costs. His is now the Legislative Affairs Director for SSCCC Region VII and responsible for all student-related advocacy and political operations in 14 community colleges in the greater LA area. He was critical in the passing of AB 1995 legislation that gave homeless students access to school facility showers through social media. He hopes to follow through by allowing the 14 community colleges in our region implement their policies at their own discretion to make sure they are compliant once the law sets in. He is also a part of a number of initiatives such as making textbooks free for all introductory courses in the LA 9, implementing food pantries for homeless students, the YES on Prop 55 campaign, and hopefully cultivating a solidified student voter bloc.

Carolina Guzman

Pierce College

Carolina is an environmental science/economics major at Pierce College who will be transferring next fall. She is a part of the American Federation of Teachers Political Internship which focuses greatly on topics such as social justice, student rights, and education. She has also created a club on campus called Students for Success (S.O.S) which allows students with similar interests to work directly with the interns in hopes of taking them on as interns the following year. When not attending class, she likes to enjoy her free time hiking and volunteering at the Encino Farmer’s Market. She is excited to continue this passion through the Campus Vote Project democracy fellowship and working with like-minded people.


Roshna Mustikhan

Pierce College

Roshna has a passion for justice and she is an advocate for women’s and student rights. She plans on majoring in political science in hopes of becoming a criminal justice attorney, hence her passion for justice. She has researched and come to knowledge that numerous inmates have been wrongly accused of heinous crimes and thus, should be deemed innocent. Born into a Middle Eastern family of refugees, she is dedicated to tackling Islamophobia and commits to spreading awareness of the misconception of Muslims. She has taken her first step during high school by joining the Muslim Club and gave speeches about the truth of the meaning of Islam, which promotes love and peace. She has a long journey ahead of her, a journey of commitment, dedication, and perseverance.

Susana Iturbe

Los Angeles City College

Susana attends Los Angeles City College and is double majoring in English and political science with a minor in Arabic studies. She hopes to pursue law at UCLA, after receiving her bachelor’s degree. She enjoys swimming and playing water polo at a competitive level. In her spare time, she likes to take photographs of activist work, graffiti and architecture in Los Angeles. Voting for her is essential and important because she wasn’t born in the USA and she couldn’t vote until she became legal. She feels that voting is the biggest right you are entitled to once you become a citizen, and that it’s important to vocalize your thoughts and opinions, and elect someone who will represent those views in the best way. It helps you make a difference and be part of what could possibly be a life altering decision.

Sophiaya Hyder

Los Angeles City College

Sophiaya, a Los Angeles native, is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in political science and will be transferring to a university next fall. She has strong ties to the community through years of community service and youth leadership programs. From 2010-2012, Sophiaya help create Angelinos Youth Leadership Group to set up community clean up campaigns and canned food drives for the homeless in their community. Angelinos Youth Leadership Group in 2011, received an award of outstanding achievement in youth leadership from the City of Los Angeles, from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. In 2015, Sophiaya completed a one month Thai youth volunteer project “The Royal Thai Initiative At The Puparn Development Center” in Sakon Nakon, Thailand. There she experienced a true culture immersion with the local villagers where she worked, hunted, farmed, and lived among them and was taught the cycle of self sustainability. In 2016, she was selected to participate in the Thai American National Internship Program in Washington D.C. There she had the unique opportunity to personally shadow congressional staff members on Capitol Hill. Upon completion of the program she was awarded a certificate of achievement for outstanding participation by The Royal Thai Embassy Washington D.C. and U.S. Asia Institute. She is currently interning at American Federation of Teachers Local 1521 where she is working on voter registration and Prop 55 outreach particularly among her young peers. It is her dream to see more Latino-Asians like herself politically involved.

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