Upward Bound Projects

Andrea Raya

Program Coordinator

A Quote That You Like/Live By?

Strength grows in the moments when you think you can’t go on but you keep going anyway.

Who I Am

I was born in Yuba City, Ca but raised in Olivehurst, CA for most of my life. However, my heart lies heavily in my parent’s hometown in Puerta Del Monte, Guanajuato, Mexico. My family and I try going every year in December, but for as long as I can remember, my parents have always taken my sisters and I even before I was born. I met the love of my life there, too. I have four crazy sisters: two older and two younger. I graduated from Lindhurst High School in 2013 and graduated from CSU, Chico in 2017 with my BA in Child Development and a minor in Family Relations. I am the first in my family to graduate with my Bachelor’s degree, but no the last. I have high hopes for my two younger sisters that they will achieve greater things than I did. I am a TRIO alumnus from CSU, Chico Upward Bound and Student Support Services(SSS) programs. I worked for Upward Bound for three summers as a resident advisor, a tutor for one semester, and as the site supervisor at Lindhurst High for a semester. Now, I am so honored to be the program advisor for their Math and Science Program. I have so much to be thankful for, especially my parents. I can’t repay them for everything they have given and done for me now but one day, I definitely plan to do so. They are the ones who painted the wings I have on me today to achieve my goals and they deserve everything that’s in my power to give back to them for all their hard work and love.

What My Interests Are

As an undergrad at Chico State, I discovered how much I enjoy going on hikes. I love going to Upper Bidwell Park and The Flumes in Paradise. I end up sore in the end but it’s so relaxing and definitely takes my mind off things when I need to. I also enjoy painting and drawing. I try doing some art work in my spare time when I can and improve. I enjoy going to Mexican rodeos and dances with my sisters. Spending time with my family is always fun; we’re a pretty weird and crazy family with something to laugh at most of the time. I help my mom decorate cakes at times and though it can be tedious sometimes, when I’m done at look at the finished cake, I feel pretty cool for doing what I did.

Why Upward Bound is Important to Me

Even if I take all the words and adjectives to describe how wonderful and important UB is for me, there will never be enough to fully describe it down to the core. I never really knew what it meant to come from a low-income family, even when I applied to UB in high school. I never really hit me until one day I was helping my mom set up her online banking account through an app and saw my parents only had $300 and still like that they always put my sisters and I first and gave us more than what they had. I wouldn’t have had the necessary knowledge and/or resources to fully prepare myself for my college entrance if it weren’t for Upward Bound. It not only changed my life but I know for sure it made a positive impact on my parents too seeing their daughters get the guidance they unfortunately couldn’t give us. Upward Bound isn’t like any other program; it truly challenges you for the better. UB is the light at the end of the tunnel, the hope we need when facing our fears, a reminder of the true grit and strength inside us… it’s family.

If you want to communicate with me, my e-mail address is araya1@csuchico.edu