Transition Mentors

 

STARS Transition Mentor Program

The Transition Mentorship Program (TMP as we call it for short) consists of 4 Transition Mentors, 1 Lead Transition Mentor, and a cohort of 100-145 mentees at any given time each quarter. Transition Mentors are current transfer students who offer high levels of support on a one on one basis. As STARS student staff members they can answer questions, make referrals to appropriate resources, and assist with financial planning, navigating the campus, acclimating to the university, addressing academic goals, balancing family responsibilities, and connecting with the campus community. During the academic year TMP also sponsors engaging programs for TMP mentees to gather in the community.

The benefits of being a part of the TMP community are:

  1. Having an open line of communication with a highly trained Transition Mentor
  2. Getting first-pass access to TMP events, workshops, newsletters, work/internship opportunities, and more!
  3. Being a part of a tight-knit community that cares for your wellness, growth, and journey.

If you're interested in being paired with a Transition Mentor, please fill out our interest form linked here as soon as possible. Email starpeer@ucsc.edu for more information.



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    Vivianna Alvarez (they/them/their)

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    TMP Coordinator

    Email: vilalvar@ucsc.edu

    Hola hola! My name is Vivianna Alvarez, my pronouns are they/them/their, and I joined the STARS community in August 2019. Although I now call San Jose home, I was born and raised in Houston, TX, earned my B.A from Hampshire College in Massachusetts and my M.Ed at the University of Vermont. Throughout my educational and professional experiences I’ve loved working with other first-generation college students, immigrants, and queer & trans people of color. Relationship building and community care are important values in my work as I resist toxic cultures and systemic inequities.

    At STARS I have the privilege of coordinating the Transition Mentorship Program (TMP), which includes working with the 5 incredible Transition Mentors, who are highly trained continuing transfer students and provide intrusive mentorship for incoming transfer and re-entry students. Additionally, I serve as the Pister Scholarship Program (PSP) Advisor, which encompasses recruiting, advising, and programming with the annual 13 regional community college scholarship recipients throughout their journey at UCSC. Lastly, I lead the professional development efforts for the student leaders across all of our STARS programs.

    One thing I love about being a part of the STARS family is working with brave and curious students who are committed to their aspirations and success. We are a community of listeners, game-changers, and learners who desire to be a part of each other's growth. We welcome you to visit us at Kresge College to connect about your journey at UCSC - especially if something is hindering your ability to succeed in any capacity; or swing by to say hello, grab a snack, and be in community! 

    The TMP leadership team is a community of listeners, game-changers, and learners who desire to support you throughout your journey and growth. We are so excited to welcome each and every one of you to the STARS family and hope you’ll get involved with the Transition Mentorship Program!


  • Noorain (she/her/hers)

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    Lead Transition Mentor

    Email: starsm6@ucsc.edu

    Hello everyone, my name is Noorain! I was born in India, but my family and I moved to sunny Southern California when I was 7-8 years old. I am a transfer student studying Neuroscience, and I hope to specialize in endocrinology (study of hormones); my long-term career goal is to work as a researcher, studying specific medical diseases and how hormones affect the brain and body, as well as developing treatments for those conditions. In my free time I like to travel/explore new places with my husband, hike, tend to my tiny garden/plants, and read! 

    I've learned a lot about myself over my time as a mentor and student at my community college, the most important of which is that I thrive on being able to help others. My experience as a mentor taught me a lot about working with people, and allowed me to create a welcoming environment for the students around me and I hope to continue that here at STARS. I look forward to being able to make a difference here, and I am grateful to have you along with me for this journey. 

    Warmly, Noorain :)


  • Kunal (he/him/his)

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    Transition Mentor

    Email: starsm7@ucsc.edu

    Hey there! My name is Kunal Agarwal and I grew up in Irvine, California but I went to community college in Santa Barbara at Santa Barbara City College. I am a Psychology and Legal Studies double major and these majors have awarded me the opportunity to explore many different types of ideas and theories about why and how our society functions today. I love learning from anyone that is passionate about the things they like, so feel free to ramble at me with anything you might feel passionate about (no worries if you haven’t found that yet, I can help you find that maybe). I like to spend my free time with my friends, playing video games, going on hikes and watching TV shows.

     

    My experience at UCSC would not have been possible without the attentive and diligent care from the people in STARS. I hope that I can give back to STARS and help others receive the same quality of guidance and support I received. I am also a part of the Renaissance Scholars program at UCSC, and for those of you who might have questions about the program feel free to reach out to me!

    Warmly,

    Kunal Agarwal


  • Alexis (she/her/hers)

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    Transition Mentor

    Email: starsm8@ucsc.edu

    Hello! My name is Alexis Artiles and I was born in Chicago but grew up in Miami, Florida. I moved to California when I was about 15 years old. I’m an Intensive Psychology and Cognitive Science double major. I am extremely passionate about human behavior and why we do what we do, especially how we communicate with one another. My long term goal is to become a therapist and work with at-risk youth, like myself growing up, in my community. When I’m not in class, I enjoy running, reading and spending time with my family. 

    When I transferred to UCSC from Evergreen Community College, I was very nervous but the support from STARS really helped me feel like I belonged and gave me all the resources I needed to be successful, especially being a re-entry and parenting student. This is why I wanted to become a mentor at TMP, so I could help others that were in a similar situation as myself. I have gone through a lot as a transfer student and as a mentor over the years and I can’t wait to help as a mentor to you in your time here at UCSC! 

    In Community Spirit,

    Alexis 


  • Alexia (she/her/hers)

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    Transition Mentor

    Email: starsm9@ucsc.edu

    Hello everyone! My name is Alexia Lomeli, I was born in Rosarito, Baja California and moved to San Diego when I was 10 years old. I am proud to be a first-generation college student and a Mexican immigrant! In my previous job, I worked with neurodiverse students and taught visually impaired children to read and write Braille. My major is intensive psychology, and I aspire to become a therapist. As a transfer student from Southwestern College, I understand the challenges of juggling school, work, and family life. I am excited to help students from all walks of life navigate their time and build a community at UC Santa Cruz. An important lesson I learned in my time at UCSC is to give yourself grace when you make mistakes. In my free time, I love skateboarding, cooking, reading, and hanging out with my dog, Remi. 

    To the STARS student(s) reading this, I want you to know that you absolutely belong here, and I am excited to welcome you to UC Santa Cruz to listen, learn, and achieve academic success! 

     Kindly, 

    Alexia Lomeli


  • Cyrus (they/he)

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    Transition Mentor

    Email: starsm10@ucsc.edu

    Hello! My name is Cyrus Quan. I was born and raised in San Francisco, and am a transfer from City College of San Francisco! I'm majoring in Politics with a minor in History of Consciousness, with pursuing research in Jurisprudence and Prison Abolition & Reform. I’m incredibly passionate about coffee, poetry, experimental theatre, and building community across all three! My professional background is in public education from working for the San Francisco School District mentoring and advocating for young adults, and prior to that, I worked in specialty coffee for years. I am so excited to support fellow transfer students as a transition mentor at UCSC. 

         Transferring from City College of San Francisco, I’ve come to know what a diverse and, at times, isolating experience being a transfer student can be, but me and the STARS team hope to champion your personal path towards success and community. I hope to cultivate spaces of support and camaraderie, and have found wonderful communities in our school’s Worker-Student Solidarity Coalition, Matchbox Arts Magazine, and my own student org, Bar None Coffee. I’m thrilled to help support you in whatever capacity I can in your growth as a student, thinker, and individual!

    Cheers, 

    Cyrus Quan


Student Resources 

  • STARS Student Budget
    Financial tool to help assist you with creating a personal budget, with your income and expenses. Evalute how much money you have each quarter by reviewing your Financial AId, income earned, family contrubutions, as well as quarterly bills and overall expenses.
  • Academic Support Resources
    There are a number of resources available at UCSC to support you in succeeding.  Be proactive in seeking help when you need it, and remember that there are many people at UCSC who want to see you do well.
  • STARS Counselors
    STARS staff embrace and develop connections and cooperative relationships with colleagues and community partners to create a meaningful and personalized network of support for our students.