Student Spotlights

Valley Bound Commitment Student Spotlights

A photo of Brooke FyfeBrooke Fyfe

Brooke Fyfe graduated from Colton High School. She recalls the expectation set upon her to attend college, but felt unsure of where to begin. Fyfe says Valley-Bound taught her the ins and outs of college. She even earned straight A’s for the first time in her life. “Because of Valley-Bound, I was able to conquer my first year,” said Fyfe.

Fyfe earned her Bachelor’s in psychology from the University of La Verne and her Master’s in Educational Counseling from the University of Redlands. She now works for federally funded program GEAR UP, which helps prepare students for college. In the evenings, she is an adjunct counselor at Crafton Hills College. “I wanted to pay it forward,” she said. “When I was in high school, I didn’t get (the) information that I needed to get to college…today, I want to make sure that doesn’t happen (to) any other student.”

A photo of Angel OrozcoAngel Orozco

Angel Orozco attended Colton High School. “My parents always taught us the importance of education,” he said. However, a first generation college student, Orozco felt confused. “Having a counselor guiding me through my first year was essential to me staying committed. For the first time in my life I had a group of people who not only cared about my success in college, but also knew how to give me the direction I needed.”

Orozco graduated from SBVC in 2012. He graduated from Cal Poly Pomona with his bachelor’s in Construction Engineering Technology in 2015. Orozco is now a Project Engineer with Walton Construction Services, managing government funded construction projects that involve building apartment complexes for low-income, homeless, veteran and senior living. “I love my job and cannot imagine myself doing anything else,” he said.

A photo of Christina RaneyChristina Raney

First generation college graduate Christina Raney attended Colton High School. “My father would tell me: ‘I want you to go to college so that you can carry a briefcase instead of a lunch pail,’” said Raney. That has resonated with me throughout my entire life.” Raney says that Valley-Bound provided guidance.

University campus tours were a highlight for Raney as they opened her eyes to the possibilities ahead. She also enjoyed finding friends in other Valley-Bound students. Raney earned her associate degree from SBVC in 2013 and her Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication from CSUSB in 2016. Raney is currently a substitute Clerical Assistant II in the Financial Aid office at SBVC. “I take pride in…that I’ll always be connected to this college even long after attending,” she said. “It’s full circle for me.”

A photo of Krista Ornelas-MoraKrista Ornelas-Mora

Krista Ornelas-Mora graduated from Colton High School in 2008. “The Valley-Bound program made a huge impact in my life,” she said. “Without it, I’m not sure when I would have decided to go to college.” Ornelas-Mora also found that Valley-Bound’s community service requirement introduced her to the concept of giving back.

Ornelas-Mora earned her Associate of Arts in Business Administration from SBVC in 2010, and transferred to CSUSB where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration in 2012. Returning to SBVC, she currently works in the Financial Aid Office. “I know what it’s like to be a student in financial need going through the struggles of school and daily life…I truly admired the SBVC staff when I was a student here, I ultimately just want to give back and serve the students.”

A photo of George MoraGeorge Mora

George Mora knew he wanted to pursue a college education, yet was unsure of where begin. “I was the first in my family to graduate, so having a team to help me navigate through my first year is something I am very grateful for,” he said. In 2011, Mora graduated from SBVC with an associate degree in Liberal Arts. He transferred to CSUSB, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology in 2013.

Mora began work at a non-profit organization during his final quarter at CSUSB, educating and advocating on behalf of seniors for three years. Currently, Mora is building his own business while working as a substitute teacher for a local school district. “I was the first in my family to graduate from a four-year university.  I am very proud of this accomplishment and hope to inspire others to work hard and never give up.”

A photo of Erica PerezErica Perez

Colton native Erica Perez graduated from Colton High School in 2012. A first generation college student, Perez said: “My parents did not have the opportunity to attend college and thus instilled in me the importance of an education…deciding to apply (to Valley-Bound) has been one of the best decisions I have made.”

Perez earned her Associate of Arts with an emphasis in biological and physical sciences and cites graduating with honors as a proud achievement. Shortly after, she was accepted into SBVC’s Registered Nursing program. Perez is starting her second semester of nursing and plans to graduate in May 2018. “I owe my success to my parents, the Valley Bound-Commitment program and especially to (Valley-Bound director and counselor) Carmen Rodriguez,” she said.