Success means different things to different people. For some, it’s graduating from high school or landing a dream job. For others, it’s having the opportunity to build a stable family. Whatever our scholars define as success, Pivotal strives to get them there. And every time we check in with past scholars and see how far they’ve come, we know we’ve done our job. In our “Where Are They Now?” series, we’re catching up with four Pivotal Alumni to share their personal journeys to success.
At one point, Pivotal was nothing more than a phone number on a flyer to Jennifer. After that first call, Jennifer became part of the Pivotal family and continued on a path to achieve things she never imagined possible. She became the first person in her family to graduate from college, and she discovered a new passion for helping vulnerable people through her current job at a community health center.
How did you find out about and initially get involved with Pivotal?
I found out about Pivotal, at the time known as Silicon Valley Childrens Fund & TeenForce, shortly after I graduated high school in 2011. I went to the former Children’s Shelter by Union Ave. looking for help, and the receptionist gave me a flyer to call TeenForce.
When was your Pivotal pivot? When did things start to change for you?
Things began to change when I was hired at the San Jose Chamber of Commerce. Pivotal connected me with them to interview for an office assistant position, and I got the job!
Where did you go to school/where do you work now?
I graduated from San Francisco State University in 2016 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. I currently work as the Executive Assistant to the CEO at Gardner Health Services, a community health center in San Jose.
What are you planning on doing next?
My goal in the next couple of years is to be promoted to a leadership role within Gardner Health Services.
What's the one accomplishment that you're most proud of?
I’m proud of being the first person in my family to graduate from college while overcoming numerous obstacles.
When you think about your journey, is there a speed bump that you overcame along the way?
During my sophomore year of college, my mother passed away from Leukemia and I had to surrender my younger brother to family in Texas because I simply couldn’t take care of him. I was working full-time in San Jose and going to school full-time in San Francisco, and my 12-year-old brother needed a lot more support than I could give him.
What was your biggest dream in high school and what is your biggest dream now?
In high school, I had no clue about my potential or what I could do with my life. Now, I dream of being a leader for a healthcare corporation and helping the most vulnerable people in our community.
What's your favorite memory of working with Pivotal Coach or Staff?
My favorite memory was when I met President Barack Obama. Pivotal was being recognized by The White House, and John Hogan invited me to go along to Washington D.C. I’ll never forget that day!
Who is your celebrity crush and why?
Jason Momoa. I mean look at him, who wouldn’t have a crush on him?!
If you could share one thing with our supporters, what would it be?
Supporters, thank you so much for investing and believing in Pivotal’s mission. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for Pivotal. You helped open doors for me and made it possible for me to be the first one to graduate from college in my family. I am now a successful Latina professional with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration working for Gardner Health Services!