PhD in Education graduate Alma Zaragoza-Petty has joined ScholarMatch as a college advisor. ScholarMatch provides free college counseling resources and services for aspiring college students from low-income families. The organization was founded by author and educator Dave Eggers in 2010 to connect students and the community to make college possible. ScholarMatch began as a simple crowdfunding platform and grew into a full service college-access organization that matches underserved youth with donors, resources, colleges, and professional networks.
Dr. Zaragoza-Petty is a native Californian who was also raised in Acapulco, Mexico. She has worked with students for almost 20 years in various capacities and settings. She started as an enrollment officer at East Los Angeles College, where she began her studies. While at UCLA, she tutored and advised students in South Central and Huntington Park, where she grew up. As the first in her family to go to college, she became interested in learning about educational equity, and went on to complete a Masters in Counseling at CSU Northridge and a predoctoral internship at UC Berkeley. She lived in NorCal for three years while working for the EAOP and Cal-SOAP programs assisting students become college-ready. She returned to SoCal for her doctoral studies at UC Irvine where she graduated in 2016 with a PhD in Education, specialized in Educational Policy and Social Context.