Get To Know Them: Summer '17 Interns

20170719_130239.jpg During Kid City’s busy summer, the program is made possible by staff, volunteers and of course, interns. All of the interns are young adults ready to share their passion for education equality with new and returning KC participants alike. With jobs ranging from teaching assistants to graphic designers, they all bring a little piece of who they are to our community, making it fun and open, as always. Take your time to meet some of them here!




Carlos Beltran

At first, Carlos thought that he was just signing up to be a volunteer. It wasn’t until he filled out the form that he realized it was an internship; however, this commitment did not scare him because he was eager to share his knowledge with students. With  a masters in education from UCLA, he was ready to teach  Social Justice & Ethnic Studies. Now four weeks into the summer program, Carlos and his students have discussed racism, gentrification, and gender roles. Carlos is excited because students “now have a name to give the unfortunate experiences they have faced”. In addition, he says his students have taught him just as much as he has taught them. Asked what he would do a hundred extra dollars in his pocket, Carlos, a frequent reader,  would buy books and donate them to Kid City.


Ulisses Esparza

Ulisses helps teach the Social Justice and Ethnic Studies class alongside Carlos. Although not a previous member of Kid City, this 4th year CSU Fullerton student loves what he has found in the Kid City community. The internship is his first job and has taught him lots about presentation skills and interactions with people, in just a short amount of time. The new responsibility he has taken on has been a great way for him to prepare for his pursuit of a graduate school in education. Ulisess says he would sleep all day if he could!





Diana Villamar Lopez

A Bravo High School alumni and current Cal State LA student, this future mechanical engineer currently is the Office Operations Intern. An active member of Kid City since 2012, Diana would still “be here [Kid City] all the time” even if she didn’t need help. Her experience this summer has been very different than previous years because she is seeing the “behind the scenes”. Working on spreadsheets, calling parents, and heading a committee for Splash of LA has given her insight on nonprofit work. She has learned how to prioritize and more importantly, has become a lot more responsible. She knows it is “no game”! Diana loves that the program is growing and wishes it a lot more expansion.





Miguel Andrade Jr.

For Miguel, Kid City is "another place to call home." This second year at UC Riverside finds himself occupied this summer teaching and assisting in Computer Science, Math Tutoring, and SAT Prep workshops. Completing his fourth year here, Miguel is amazed to see how much he has grown throughout the years when he is able to teach others what he once learned. This upcoming school year he will be living off campus so the money he is making helps; however, he recognizes that he's gaining a lot more than financial support during this internship. In his time here he has seen how much peer mentoring matters to the high school students and Miguel truly enjoys making meaningful connections with the new participants. "It's good to be back," he says, "I get to see friends that moved across the country and meet new people." If Miguel could, he would eat pizza for the rest of his life!


Christy Illescas 

Christy  is all about our event “Splash of LA”. Working alongside Alma Catalan, she makes sure all the planning is up to date for our big summer festival. She sits in on all committee meetings and offers guidance on how to make the event the best it can be. Christy has come a long way to this internship. Starting Kid City as a sophomore in high school, she is now a third year at Franklin & Marshall, a Pennsylvania school. Although she can be spending her time elsewhere. she keeps coming back to Kid City because she loves the relationships she forms with younger students every summer. Christy sees how she used to be, scared but ambitious, reflected in the high school students and offers her advice. Even if she were not an intern, she would come as a volunteer to provide ease and assistance to the place that gave her so much support in initiating her college career. Her ultimate objective is to help any kid, no matter who they are or where they come from.



Marbrisa Flores

Marbrisa leads the Mentorship Program and the Path to College class.  The Mentorship Program matches students with adults who guide them through the college application process, work with major/career choices, and simply offer life advice. On the same note, the Path to College class works with high school students to gain awareness in necessary and helpful steps towards college like standardized tests, letters of recommendation, volunteering and more.  An advocate for social justice, this second year Berkeley student always knew she wanted a job at a non-profit that served under-represented communities like her own. She recognizes the disadvantages faced in homes when there is a lack of financial resources and fear of being deported or imprisoned so she’s grateful this program exists. As an intern, she realizes that the college access program is more than just talking to students; it’s paperwork, emails, phone calls and more. Marbrisa is amazed at how many students Kid City has seen through the college process and says “I don’t understand how such a small place can have so much hope.” Now one of her younger brothers, Cairo Flores,  has started coming to Kid City and she hopes to see her remaining two brothers be part of it too. With $100 she would like to backpack the world.




Frances Melchor

One of our program assistants and recent college graduates, Frances has been a part of the Kid City family since summer 2012. She started off volunteering, then became a student in the college access program, and now is an intern.  She focuses on the volunteers, the key people in keeping the program running. Even though she has an older sister, she didn’t want to bother her during the college application process; luckily all the help she needed was at Kid City. In addition to academics, she also received lots of emotional help when she had issues in her personal life. It was in this space that she realized the importance of mental health. Her priority is now bringing mental help to those who might have never even realized they needed it, especially to students in her community. Frances says this place is “busy, busy, busy” but will always continue to come and give back. A future mentor for the fall, she will keep making this community thrive.



Kevin Jang

The intern supervisor, Kevin Jang, is one of the Kid City powerhouses. Only a sophomore at UCLA, he believes this position is a  perfect fit for him. Also employed in UCLA’s Athletic Department, he knows what a “cut-throat” environment is like. As an Assistant Manager, he gave instructions to people two to four times his age so he knows how to be assertive and set his foot down; however, he has found a way to carry this authority into Kid City and still be open and kind at the same time. He credits his UCLA job to Kid City’s assistance in experience through a previous internship and the resume workshops/classes. Feeling grateful, this summer’s internship is his way of saying “thank you.” Now working with people his age, he says, “I consider myself equal to everyone I am working with,” despite his position.  At the end of all, Kevin would love to spend his money at Chipotle and YogurtLand.