SVCP Partner Blog Series: Ohlone College

by: Stacey Manzano & Laura Hudock

A speaker giving a speech during the 2nd Annual Women in Engineering and Computer Science Mentoring Dinner

Ohlone College hosted its 2nd Annual Women in Engineering and Computer Science Mentoring Dinner on Friday, March 9th, 2018 at the Newark Campus. Hosted by our Bioengineering Professor Rose-Margaret Itua, many Bioengineering students from Ohlone were in attendance, as well as members of the SVETP team who assisted with planning this event. It was a fantastic way to create a meaningful network and learning opportunity for students from six different community colleges, and gave industry professionals a chance to mentor aspiring engineers and computer scientists. There were over 150 professionals and students who participated in this year’s event. The professionals in attendance represented regional industry employers such as Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Northrop Grumman, Lam Research, Hewlett Packard, Risk Management Solutions, Equinix, Quanergy, Cisco, Lockheed Martin, Synopsys, and The Clorox Company.

Students and mentors participating in a group exercise.

Ohlone Trustee Teresa Cox, the first African-American woman in the nation with a degree in Nuclear Engineering, was the keynote speaker and gave an inspirational talk.  Ms. Cox has over 20 years of experience working for several Fortune 500 companies in Silicon Valley, and everyone at the dinner enjoyed her speech.  Claudia Galvan, leader of the Society of Women Engineers' local section in Silicon Valley, gave an amazing “Lightning Talk” about the importance of having grit and determination. There was a free LinkedIn photo booth to assist students with starting or optimizing the online networking site; students enjoyed being mentored by professionals who sat at their table. The Director of Dance and Director of Health and Wellness at Ohlone College led the audience through a dance exercise and a lesson about mindfulness. The theme of the dinner was “have your cake and eat it too,” so how to maintain a healthy work-life balance was highlighted throughout the evening. This theme seemed to spark a lot of discussion among the mentors and mentees.

Particpating students and mentors taking a group picture.

This event was also a wonderful way to celebrate the sixth month anniversary of the SVETP Bioengineering program that was launched at Ohlone College in Fall 2017. The Associate’s Degree program in Bioengineering prepares students for entry-level positions in the bioengineering industry, such as those in regional national laboratories. Students in this program develop a solid foundation in chemistry, biology, physics and engineering. We are very excited about the Bioengineering Program at Ohlone College, and the opportunities it will bring students who are trying to obtain entry-level jobs that require two years of college-level science and engineering.  

For more information on this event and/or Bioengineering contact Rose-Margaret Itua at:


This guest blog post was provided to Silicon Valley Career Pathways by Ohlone College as part of the SVCP Partner Blog series. Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Or visit our website,, for more information.

SVCP Partner Blog Series: Invent Your Future

by Ruth Stergiou, CEO, Invent Your Future

We hear a lot today about the changing nature of jobs – how routine tasks will be increasingly completed by robots; how cognitive tasks will be accomplished through Artificial Intelligence (AI). Since the arrival of the internet some 20 years ago the work world has changed significantly but it’s generally agreed that the next 20 years will see even more exponential change in the nature of work and what it takes to be successful.

Invent Your Future CEO, Ruth Stergiou speaking with students at Dare 2B Digital (2016)

AI today may be in its infancy, but change is coming fast and we need to think through how best to prepare students, employees, schools and companies for the new competitive world of work. It’s important to remember that while AI and machine learning may be driving the latest wave of technological change, that it is people who write algorithms. As discussed in a December 2017 McKinsey Global Institute podcast, The Future of Work, “In order for people to keep up, adapt, and work alongside effectively with highly capable machines, they will require a very different set of skills.” People, it would appear, will need technical fluency and soft skills, including empathy, curiosity, confidence and the ability to be creative.

The biggest shift emerging is that companies increasingly need employees who are multi-disciplinary, innovative thinkers and creative problem solvers rather than specialized in-depth knowledge workers who are successful test-takers.

At Invent Your Future, it is our goal to help facilitate this change.  With our Dare 2B Digital programs we provide highly motivational applied learning experiences which equip students with a robust problem solving approach. This methodology is based on design thinking, an approach which can be applied to an infinite number of challenges in students’ lives and work.

The Techshop by Fujitsu at Dare 2B Digital. (2016)

On March 3, 2018 in collaboration with Silicon Valley Career Pathways and MetroED, we will bring together 250 high school students interested in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math). During the day students will experience real-world problem solving with professionals from top Silicon Valley companies including PayPal, Deloitte, Logitech, Pharmacyclics – An AbbVie Company, Tesla Vehicles and Tesla Energy.

Participating companies work with the Invent Your Future team to select a challenge which is a real issue in their industry, is open-ended enough that it can have many possible solutions and is centered around experiences which a teenager can relate to and comprehend. Students will interview a partner to gain empathy into the problem, define a specific angle of the problem they want to tackle, come up with a lot of ideas, and create a prototype that they'll test out with a partner. The final product from each group will be a rough prototype of their product or experience. Winning teams will win exciting tech prizes and experiences including a private visit to the Tesla Vehicle factory in Fremont, California!

Students and educators participating in the Dare 2B Digital event. (2016)

Parents are also invited to attend Dare 2B Digital to attend a conference track of their own in which they will hear the latest on how to support their students from industry leaders, educators, college financial advisors and more.

Our goal is to increase digital fluency of young innovators through student engagement, industry mentoring and parent involvement. Since 2009, our highly successful Dare 2B Digital Conferences have excited, engaged and educated young innovators ages 11-17. From Silicon Valley to Southern California and around the globe, partners have an opportunity to bring these highly-acclaimed learning events to young innovators everywhere.

Dare 2B Digital is produced by Invent Your Future. For more information please visit or contact

This guest blog post was provided to Silicon Valley Career Pathways by Invent Your Future as part of the SVCP Partner Blog series. Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Or visit our website,, for more information.

Team Profile: Daniel


by Daniel Negrete and Megan Crossfield


Hi, I’m Daniel Negrete. I work with Silicon Valley Career Pathways (SVCP). I graduated from San Francisco State University in May of 2017.

Describe your typical day at SVCP:

SVCP is one of those organizations where there isn’t a typical day. Most of my projects are communications oriented -content creation, video recording and editing, and blogging- but in a pinch, I can fill any of the outreach roles or conduct workshops for students at Silicon Valley Career Technical Education center and other campuses.

Are you an Android or iOS user?

Android, all the way.

What are you listening to/reading/ watching these days?

These days I listen to a lot of podcasts. Some of my favorite podcasts include NPR’s Planet Money Podcast, How I Built This, Talking Fussball, and Lore, among other podcasts. As for reading, I’ve been reading Machiavelli’s The Prince, 15th-century Italian politics is a roller coaster ride.

What’s the best thing about working at SVCP?

The best thing about working at SVCP is working with our partners to organize our Career Pathways Days for students. Our Career Pathways Days give students the opportunity to interact with industry professionals and learn that careers in Silicon Valley are a possibility for them. Hearing the students share their thoughts on how the Career Pathways Day changed their outlook on pursuing a career in Silicon Valley is the most rewarding part of my job.

What do you like to do when you’re not working on workforce development (or education)?

When I’m not at work I go hiking and exploring different places with my girlfriend. We recently went to Mt.Tamalpais. The forest and the views of Mt.Tamalpais are amazing. We took our time to appreciate the scenery and try out different photography and film techniques. Besides hiking, I can usually be found taking lessons on YouTube and SkillShare on video production and entrepreneurship.

Thank you, Daniel. We're glad to have you on our team!

Team Profile: Nancy


by Nancy Becerra, Daniel Negrete, Megan Crossfield

This week we’ll be talking with our new MYF Program specialist Nancy Becerra. Nancy is responsible for conducting outreach to middle and high school students, coordinating events, supporting students, and conducting workshops.


My name is Nancy Becerra, I am a first generation Latina, born and raised in Los Angeles California. I attended UC Santa Cruz for my undergraduate studies, where I obtained my B.A. in Psychology and minor in Education. It was during my undergraduate studies where I found my commitment and passion for education. Throughout my journey and professional experience I have always been committed in helping students with their academic success and social development; in particularly I like to focus and work with low-income first generation students. To continue my journey serving students and growing professionally, I am now pursuing my M.A. in Counseling Education at San Jose State University.

Are you an Android or iOS user?

I am an iOS user, but can definitely use either or.

What are you listening to/reading/ watching these days?

I listen to a variety of music in Spanish and English, but if I had to choose my favorite it would be Reggaeton (Spanish music). Reggaeton is a combination of everything I love; influenced by hip hop, Latin American, and Caribbean music. 

What’s the best thing about working at SVCP?

Being part of a team and an initiative that aims to expand educational opportunities for students is the best thing about working at SVCP.         

What do you like to do when you’re not working on workforce development (or education)?

When I am not at work or at school, I enjoy spending time with my family.

What might someone be surprised to know about you?

Something someone would be surprised to know about me is that when I was in high school I wanted to be a pharmacist.

Thank you, Nancy! We are glad to have you on our team.

Team Profile: Arden


by Arden Ambrocio, Danny Negrete, & Megan Crossfield

This week we’ll be talking with our new MYF Program specialist Arden Ambrocio. Arden is responsible for conducting outreach to middle and high school students, coordinating events, supporting students, and conducting workshops.


I graduated from UC Davis in 2016 with a B.S. in Human Development and B. A. in Psychology. During my undergraduate, I became a teaching assistant for a summer enrichment program at UC Berkeley which is where I fell in love with working in education. I worked with first-generation low-income high school students from all over the Bay Area. As a first-generation student myself, I wanted to share my knowledge of navigating the college application process and provide Higher Ed resources to students who faced educational barriers within their communities.

I am currently a graduate student at San Jose State University earning my Masters in Counselor Education. As a graduate student I have been able to serve students from elementary school to college and have enjoyed being a resource to students from various backgrounds. I love working in this field and I am excited to grow as a leader and advocate for higher education.

Describe your typical day at SVCP:

Collaboration is key in any workspace that involves making a difference for student’s academic and/or career development success. Most of the projects I have been working on so far at SVCP is outreaching to various community colleges in order to help coordinate campus tours for our SVCTE students, as well as gathering research on how MYF can become a great resource for the high schools that we serve. I am also excited for the outreach opportunities and events we will be having this spring.  

Are you an Android or iOS user?

iOS, definitely! I have a Macbook so I must have an iPhone as well.

What are you listening to/reading/ watching these days?

I am a Netflix and Hulu addict so I’ve been catching up on a number of shows lately, but the ones that I am obsessed with currently are: The Good Doctor, This is Us, and The Good Place.

I listen to a variety of music genres from Soul to Hip Hop but the artists that I have been currently listening to on repeat are: Marc E. Bassy, Johnnyswim, and Us the Duo.

What’s the best thing about working at SVCP?

Although I just started in this new position, the best thing about being part of SVCP is the opportunity to be part of an initiative that will bridge opportunity gaps for many students in this region. The Silicon Valley is an ever changing and growing opportunity market and I am excited to be a part of the creation of pathways for students.

What do you like to do when you’re not working on workforce development (or education)?

When I am not working or in-school (where I spend almost all my time!), I sing in the choir at my local church! I also love going to various food and/or boba places.

Thank you, Arden! We are glad to have you on our team.

Top 3 Reasons to Give StudentLingo as a Gift

by Daniel Negrete and Megan Crossfield

The holiday season is here, and all of us at Silicon Valley Career Pathways would like to offer StudentLingo to our consortium partner educators as a gift for you to use in next year’s classes. In this blog, we’ll explore three reasons why StudentLingo is an amazing gift you can pass on to your students in the upcoming year.

1.      StudentLingo doesn’t only enhance learning strategies, rather it takes the best from education and professional development to provide students with workshops they can use to become well-rounded individuals. Workshop topics include reducing test anxiety, discovering your learning style, writing effective resumes and cover letters, and much more.

2.      StudentLingo can be incorporated to enhance classes, orientations, student services and act as a motivator. Our on-site counselor incorporated StudentLingo in her class lectures as part of her curriculum. Teachers within our consortium have used it as extra credit opportunities for their students. Feedback from the students has been positive as it has given them the opportunity to study new learning techniques.

3.      Most importantly, it’s free to our consortium partners.

We hope this list helps clarify any doubts you may have on about resource. If you would like more information on StudentLingo please visit our website to learn more.

Happy Holidays!

Silicon Valley Career Pathways at the Young Women's Leadership Summit

 Students and their mentors working together a build the bridge.

Students and their mentors working together a build the bridge.

On December 1st, 2017, Silicon Valley Career Pathways (SVCP) traveled to Juniper Networks’ Aspiration Dome to support our partner, Silicon Valley Leadership Group’s (SVLG) Young Women’s Leadership Summit. The event consisted of speakers from the United States Government, Juniper Networks, and Intuitive surgical.  More than 100 middle school students participated in the event, many from SVCP partner institutions.

The speakers at the event talked about their inspiration for entering into a STEM career and about their role in their organizations. Later, students participated in a Q&A session with the presenters, and participated in a STEM activity to create a bridge of puzzle pieces while working together.

 Members of FRC Team 581 speaking with the students.

Members of FRC Team 581 speaking with the students.

As the event came to a close, female members San Jose High School’s First Robotics Competition (FRC) Team 581 spoke about their experiences in robotics. Members of Team 581 encouraged students to take part in their robotics club, even if they know nothing about the topic. Robotics not only allowed members of Team 581 to participate in an extracurricular activity but it also inspired them to pursue a career in STEM. Team 581 then gave a live demonstration of their robot’s t-shirt launching capabilities. Some students walked away with a new shirt.

SVLG’s Young Women’s Leadership Summit is a representation of the public and private sector working together to break down the barriers and stigmas associated with STEM. It’s an effort to encourage young women to pursue a career in STEM and be as successful as their male colleagues.  We’re proud to be partners with SVLG and to have attended in this event.

5 Coding Websites to Learn to Code

by Daniel Negrete & Megan Crossfield

Millions of lines of code run everything from schools, hospitals, banks, cars, and phones. As we move forward in the 21st century coding will become an indispensable skill and the people who know how to code will become assets for the organizations they work for. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Information Communication and Technology (ICT) is expected to experience a growth rate of 13 percent between 2016 and 2026.

In this blog, you will find a list of the top resources you can use to learn how to code and get your foot in the door.

1. is a free website and community dedicated to teaching people how to code. Students learn to code by taking part in a series of challenges and build projects as they go through the curriculum. Along the way, students will earn verified certificates. Free Code Camp also has blogs posted on Medium, a YouTube Channel, a podcast, and a robust forum and subreddit where students can get help or feedback.

2. is a website where you can take lessons in HTML, CSS, Python, Javascript, Ruby and many others languages. Some of the lessons are free but you can upgrade to Codecademy pro for $19.99 a month if you want additional features or pay $199 for their Intensive programs.

3.    There’s a pretty good chance you may have come across them on YouTube with their video featuring celebrities and tech CEOs. is a free website aimed at teaching students k-12 how to code. A notable feature of the site is its one-hour tutorials called “Hour of Code” in which students learn to code using Star Wars, Minecraft, and Frozen themed activities.

4. Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA)  brings together world-class experts to provide free online training that helps you build your skills and advance your career. The site offers starting points in mobile and web development, game development, network and cloud engineering, database development, and general resources for students interested in computer science careers.

5.  Created by the makers of Firefox, Mozilla Developers Network is a learning platform for web technologies. The site hosts a variety of documents, tutorials, and references to get you started on creating web projects.

If you’re just starting and you’re daunted by the overwhelming amount of resources, we hope this list provides some clear insight. These resources are not meant to replace your current education but rather act as a supplement to it. We also encourage you to visit the Career Pathways page on to learn more about which of our partner colleges can get you started on a career in ICT.

SVCP Career Pathways Day

 From left to right: Staci Lyons, Jose Lazares, Vicki Jeska, David Lemos, Marice Uy, and Georgianna Sassano.

From left to right: Staci Lyons, Jose Lazares, Vicki Jeska, David Lemos, Marice Uy, and Georgianna Sassano.

by Daniel Negrete & Megan Crossfield

November 7, 2017 was an exciting day for over 100 Calaveras Hills High School and Milpitas Adult Education students. Participants attended the SVCP Career Pathways Day, an event meant to expose students to careers in high-wage, high-growth, and high-need career fields. Presenters included, David Lemos from SamTrans, Vicki Jeska from Pharmacyclics, Jose Lazares from Intapp, Georgianna Sassano from Applied Materials, and Marice Uy from Tesla. Each presenter highlighted one of Silicon Valley Career Pathways’ five industry sectors.

 David Lemos answering a student's question.

David Lemos answering a student's question.

Moderated by Staci Lyons of Invent Your Future, the panelist kicked off the event with a discussion about their workforce experience, the importance of education, and the skill set companies look for in candidates. Students then asked panelist questions about getting their professional career started and showed an interest in applying for internships with Bay Area companies.

Following the panel discussion, students broke off into groups for a series of sessions with individual panelist. As a finale, students shared how the Career Pathways Day provided them with insight on becoming successful in Silicon Valley, as well as, network with prominent professionals.

 Georgianna Sassano talking with students.

Georgianna Sassano talking with students.

We would like to thank the Milpitas Unified School District for hosting the Career Pathways Day at their campus, Invent your Future, and the participants for taking part in the event. Silicon Valley Career Pathways, San Jose City College, and Metropolitan Education District are proud sponsors of the Map Your Future Career Pathways Day