Claremont, Calif. (January 20, 2023)—Pitzer College’s Community Engagement Center has recognized nine students with the Fall 2022 Kallick Community Service Award. Provided by Pitzer alum Deborah Kallick ’78, the $500 award goes to students who have completed 100 or more community engagement hours during the academic year.
From mental health care, to composting, to voter engagement, to partnerships with Indigenous communities, these Pitzer students exude passion for social change no matter where they work.
Daniel Bonilla ’25: Inclusive Sexual Health Conversations
The Humanity Project
As a Hive Human-Centered Design Summer Fellow, Daniel Bonilla collaboratively created The Humanity Project along with Perce Alvarez CMC ’25. The Humanity Project creates sexual health resources and a safe space for conversations that are inclusive of all sexualities and gender identities, with a focus on marginalized and BIPOC youth.
The Humanity Project covers LGBTQ+ sex education and HIV prevention, sexual health stigmas, aromantic and asexual identity, and more. Bonilla and Alvarez have amassed over 43K views and thousands of engagements across various platforms. They have connected with community organizations across Los Angeles County and the Inland Empire, including Amplifier, Inland Congregations United for Change, Uncommon Good, Riverside Pride Center, and Queer Resource Center.
Mae Garland ’23: The Different Facets of Community Care
Isla Vista Compost Collective
Mae Garland’s first initiative was a community-based Isla Vista Compost Collective (IVCC) in Santa Barbara. She worked with community members, legislators, and other members of the IVCC to plan events, secure funding, engage in outreach, and turn food waste into rich compost.
Ganesha High School
Garland also mentored students through an organization called Children Youth and Family Collaborative. This mentorship took place at Ganesha High School in Pomona.
Huei Ming Lim ’25: Making Mental Health Care Accessible
Pitzer’s Global Mental Health Lab
During summer and fall 2022, Huei Ming Lim worked as a research assistant with the Global Mental Health Lab. Under the guidance of Assistant Professor Marcus Rodriguez and former lab manager Yilin Li ’22, she worked on several projects concerning online mindfulness interventions that can create accessible mental health care in the U.S. and China. She also worked on a poster presentation for the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies Conference about how self-esteem mediates between parental validation and stress. Lim also conducted a small qualitative research project about workplace wellbeing after the Covid-19 lockdown.
Jansikwe Medina-Tayac ’25: Social Justice Advocacy Through Media and Archives
During spring 2022, Jansikwe Medina-Tayac worked with the Pomona Economic Opportunity Center to create a short film, Jornalerx, highlighting the struggles of jornalerxs (day laborers) in San Bernardino. The jornalerxs that work at the Home Depot in San Bernardino recently faced a police raid, in which many were harassed and left with thousands of dollars in unjustified tickets. Medina-Tayac’s film was included in the 13th OC Film Fiesta.
Barbara Drake and Julia Bogany Archive
In summer 2022, Medina-Tayac worked with Pitzer’s Community Engagement Center to digitally archive the work of Tongva elders Julia Bogany and Barbara Drake, who recently passed away. Medina-Tayac organized documents, photographs, videos, projects, presentations, curriculums, and lesson plans that Pitzer faculty had collected. The archive preserves Bogany and Drake’s knowledge and ensures that it goes back to the Tongva community.
Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribe
During fall 2022, Medina-Tayac worked with the Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribe through Visiting Professor Gina Lamb’s Media Arts for Social Justice course. She and a classmate secured a $10,000 grant for the tribe, organized the tribe’s website, took portraits of tribal council members, documented events, and created videos for social media and the website.
Alaina Neuburger ’24: Civic & Voter Engagement
The People’s Pitzer
Alaina Neuburger is a program assistant for The People’s Pitzer, an initiative of Pitzer’s Community Engagement Center that focuses on civic engagement to advance legislative policy and social change. In fall 2022, Neuburger helped with many projects, including a voter registration texting campaign to students; weekly newsletters to students, faculty, and staff; a civic engagement funding award application; sending a letter from Pitzer’s president about voter engagement; and publicizing a Writing Center workshop for writing to elected officials.
Neuburger is also a member of the NAACP-Pomona Valley Voter Engagement Committee, Collegiate Voter Connections. The committee “works to increase nonpartisan student voter registration and participation at ten local colleges and universities,” including The Claremont Colleges.
Sara Orr ’25: Tongva Tribe and The Claremont Colleges
Through Pitzer’s Community Engagement Center as a Native Indigenous Initiatives student intern, Sara Orr worked on cataloging and archival work for the Tongva community over the course of spring and summer 2022. This archive allows the Tongva tribe to have confidential access to their history and insight into Tongva elders Julia Bogany and Barbara Drake’s interactions with the Colleges.
Danika Petit ’25: Synthesis of Passions
Pitzer’s Global Mental Health Lab
During summer and fall 2022, Danika Petit worked with the Global Mental Health Lab on numerous projects. These projects included looking at self-compassion and mindfulness-based interventions, peer support, and how self-esteem mediates between negative parental validation and stress. Petit wishes to fuse her passion for accessible mental health research with developing fundraisers for beneficiaries who support people living with HIV and AIDS. These beneficiaries focus on overall client care and reducing the cost for antiretroviral therapy.
Pratya Poosala ’24: Trauma Research for Mental Health Advocacy
World Trade Center Family Study
Over the summer, Pratya Poosala interned in Columbia University’s Department of Psychiatry as a part of the New York State Psychiatric Institute. She assisted in the World Trade Center Family Study. She administered clinical interviews with study participants, many of whom were in the vicinity of the attacks. The extent to which the attacks had impacted participants showed how trauma lives in people’s bodies for years—as long as decades, in this case. The study’s purpose was to work with school boards and other institutions to revise their mental health policies to better support individuals suffering from long-term trauma.
Crystal Rodriguez ’23: Building Community Through Art
Mommy and Me: Art, Literacy, and Movement to Foster Connection
As co-creators, Crystal Rodriguez and Annie Nunez have been using art, literacy, and movement to foster connection between mothers and their children at Prototypes Women’s Center in Pomona. They have been holding space for the mothers and children to spend leisure time together reading books and making art.
Prototypes Art Group
Prototypes Art Group is facilitated by Rodriguez and Arlo Van Liew as an intentional recreational space for creativity for the clients at Prototypes Women’s Center.
Read the full bios of the fall 2022 Kallick Awardees.