Hey! My name is Alan, and I am currently a SuccessConnects Coach and Mentor for the Office of Academic and Multicultural Initiatives at the University of Michigan. I am originally from Huitizila, Mexico but I was raised in Detroit, MI. I graduated from Cass Technical High School and later earned my B.A. in International Studies from the University of Michigan. I am the oldest of four siblings and a first-generation college graduate, so paving the way for future generations is something that has been deeply ingrained in my work ethic and motivation. I am also a former undocumented and DACA-mented, 1.5 generation immigrant so the struggles that I endured have fueled my drive to continue working in the communities that need it most. I aspire to continue working for the empowerment of those who are marginalized and disenfranchised for a better, more inclusive, and just society.
Hi, my name is Darrin, and I am currently Head of Growth and Investment at SkyNRG, a Dutch renewable energy company. With more than 15 years experience in renewable energy, clean technology in the electric power and aviation industries, I have a proven track-record of developing, launching, and managing industry-leading projects and initiatives. I excel in coalition-building and creating tangible business outcomes by convening stakeholders from across sectors and creating investment opportunities. These include financial, political, industrial, technical, academic, and non-governmental organizations. Take On College has a great message, and I am excited to see it take off.
Our Board of Directors
Hi! My name is Diana. I am a tax accountant at KPMG LLP. I graduated cum laude from Seattle University with a bachelor’s in business administration and an emphasis in accounting. I am currently pursuing a Master’s in Business Taxation with an emphasis in Data Analytics. As the first in my family to attend college, I am excited to serve as the treasurer of a great organization to help make college more accessible to everyone. I have experience serving on the finance committee of School’s Out Washington and volunteering with United Way as a tax preparer to assist low income families file returns. In my free time, I enjoy traveling, collecting sneakers, photography, skiing and volunteering at my church’s youth group.
Hi! I'm Nick, and I am a Master's of Data Science student at the University of Michigan. I'm super excited to be on the initial Board for Take On College, and I'm happy to be participating in a great cause. My other leadership experiences include a year on the planning board for the Michigan Community Scholars Program and two years on the board for the Engineering Global Leadership Honors Program. Additionally, I have one year of experience as a student instructor in computer programming, and have taught English classes to students in Shanghai, China. In my free time, I enjoy running marathons and watching Avatar: The Last Airbender.
Hello! My name is Isabella. I have spent over 14 years in K-12 public education as a behavior specialist, teacher, and school administrator, entering the classroom as a 2011 Teach For America Los Angeles corps member. Currently, I am the Associate Director of School Services at Total Education Solutions, supporting over 150 schools in the Southern California area with their academic and special education services. I earned my B.A. from UC Riverside in Psychology and Philosophy, and continued on to earn my M.A. in Special Education from Loyola Marymount University. I am a first-generation college graduate and know how confusing the application process can be and am excited to be part of an organization helping to make college more accessible to all students. I value the importance of integrated self-care in education and also teach yoga and meditation classes. I love traveling and exploring new places, hiking and spending time with my dog, family and friends.
Ashley Soto is a University of Michigan graduate with a degree in Organizational Studies and Community Action and Social Change. She is currently an Admissions Representative with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor.
The navigation process through the complex systems of post secondary education can be difficult or nearly impossible without the proper resources. Invisible barriers continue to bar students of marginalized identities from pursuing education past the high school level. As a first generation student and professional herself, Ashley's strongest passion is advocating for students from under resourced communities and increasing their accessibility to educational opportunities.