Alumni Success Stories

Alumni Spotlight

Class of 2011 FACES graduate Wendy Mejia is a shining star of a FACES alumnus:

  • Received her B.S. in Kinesiology from SDSU in 2016
  • Served as a 2016 summer intern through Health Careers Connection (HCC) with the Center for Healthier Communities
  • Hired at Rady Children’s Hospital to work in the Safe Routes to School program in Linda Vista beginning in fall 2016.

During her internship, Wendy spent time supporting the coordinator for Faces for the Future, Crawford. She helped by planning community rotations for Crawford FACES students, introducing new partners to the program as well as making arrangements with existing partners.

Wendy also was a group leader for the Summer Medical Academy (SMA), providing leadership and support for a group of seven high school students as they moved through the two-week intensive dive into experiencing health care careers and skills.

Says Wendy, “FACES for the Future allowed me to explore my infinite possibilities …(It) gave me the opportunity to explore my mind and passion about who I was and what I wanted to become in the future. Without FACES I feel I would not be where I am now, and for that I am eternally grateful.”

The future? “I want to pursue my master’s in Public Health (at) UCSD for their Public Health Joint Doctoral program in Behavioral Sciences.”

FACES Alumni Scholarship 2016

Join us in congratulating 2016 FACES for the Future Scholarship winner Lina Ngo, a member of the Hoover High School Class of 2016. Lina is attending the University of California, Santa Barbara, with a major in Biology, emphasis in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; she aspires to be a bioengineer…or maybe a pediatrician. Her love for working with children, realized during job shadowing at Rady Children’s Hospital, is pulling her toward pediatrics. But her understanding of rapidly changing technology, and its interaction with medicine, sparks her interest in being part of a biomedical engineering team.

“Knowing that I was going to college was always a given to me, but I did not realize how difficult the path to college was going to be. I knew that money would play as a huge problem. My parents know little to nothing about college; although they understand the importance of it, they do not realize that it costs a large sum of money to attend…I have learned to be independent when it comes to college finances because I cannot depend on my parents (for financial support).” Lina is the 1st in her family to graduate high school or go to college.

Lina applied for and received several scholarships, as well as working part-time during her sophomore through senior years. She noted, “I am not going to let money be the reason why I am unable to attend college.”

Congratulations Alumnus Stacy Nguyen Carre

Stacy Nguyen Carre, a 2013 FACES graduate, just finished her Associates degree in Respiratory Therapy. She is looking forward to pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in Healthcare Management/Administration, then completing a Physicians Assistant degree in the near future.

After experiencing Respiratory Therapy at Rady Children’s Hospital, Stacy fell in love with it, and decided to pursue this career path. She shared that FACES has guided her to where she wanted to be.

“My experience with FACES was amazing. The rotations were very hands-on and gave me the opportunities to experience different careers in the medical field. Without this program, I don’t think I would’ve figured out what I love doing. With the support of all the staff and my peers, it motivated me to never give up.”

First Annual FACES for the Future Alumni Scholarships

For the first time this year, FACES was able to offer scholarships to alumni. Thanks to the generosity of donor California Endowment, three scholarships of $500 each were offered and awarded. Here are our winners.

Raenita Spriggs is a 2013 FACES graduate, and current UC-Berkeley student. Raenita plans to graduate in May of 2017 with a degree in Public Health and pursue a career in Environmental Health Policy and Research. “I would love to work in health policy with environmental researchers to expose the truth about the health consequences of the prominent toxins in our society and those who suffer from them…In this profession, I (will) be able affect change over large populations of underserved people.”


A 2014 FACES graduate, Jaqueline Phomthavong currently is in the Medical Specialties program at California College San Diego. She plans to graduate in May of 2016 and start her career as a Medical Assistant. “I have always had a passion to pursue a career in the medical field. As each day went by, I realized that I could make a difference in the future by taking on a medical career…I am one step closer to achieve my goal of being a medical assistant where I will be able to make a difference for patients.”


A new (2015) FACES graduate, Jonathen Vazquez is currently enrolled at City College, but plans to transfer to SDSU, where he plans to major in Health Science-Public Health and go on to medical school to pursue a career as a cardiologist. “I wish to be able to prevent and treat this horrific illness (hypertension) that strikes many Americans in my community. Being able to avoid hypertension, (will make) diabetes, heart disease and stroke (go down) …I am passionate about reducing the burdens on the many people who suffer.”