Tech Trek Program Manager
Marlene was raised in the Bay Area, is rooted by her Mexican and Latinx culture, and her experiences growing up with her parents and younger brother in the North Fair Oaks and East Palo Alto communities. She became the first in her family to graduate from high school and she went on to graduate from UC Berkeley with a full scholarship from the Incentive Awards Program. She achieved her M.A. in Urban Education Policy & Administration from Loyola Marymount University shortly after.
Marlene is greatly influenced by the incredible programs that supported her in her journey, and is committed to doing the same for her community. Her commitment to youth leadership development and access to opportunity was at the forefront of her roles as an Academic Counselor Apprentice at UC Berkeley, a 5th & 6th grade math teacher with Teach for America and Oakland schools, and while helping launch a national campaign to engage students on school design with XQ Institute. At the root of her work with students from historically underrepresented backgrounds, she willfully embraces the responsibility of what it means to 'look like' and relate to the narratives of the students she serves, and builds bridges across lines of difference to develop community empowerment.
When Marlene isn’t facilitating workshops, having coffee with students, or checking in with her own mentors, you can find her hiking Bay Area trails, dancing salsa, supporting her brother’s art, and visiting with friends and family. She and her college sweetheart are enjoying life as a married couple and finding balance in a lifelong journey as educators and resources for youth and families back in their home communities.