Past Fellows

These are the original short profiles from the main Kaya Co. site.

Summer 2014 Fellows:


Erlinda Delacruz Foundation

Erlinda recently graduated from Boston College as a Sociology major with a minor in Film Studies, and will be going back in the Fall for a Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Growing up, Erlinda’s always been passionate about my culture, and in college, her Fil-Am Identity has further developed through her numerous leadership roles in the Filipino community in Boston. Through Kaya Co., she hopes to create her own relationship with the Philippines, but also to do her part in helping strengthen the country that she loves.


Danielle Peterson

Unlad Kabayan

Danielle is an undergraduate at Brown University studying the fascinating subject of biology. During this time, she has been exposed to the Kaya Co. fellowship through her involvement in Filipino Alliance. It was ten years ago when she first stepped, young and wide-eyed, on the Philippine Islands and since then has yearned to return. She is a proud Filipina who found in the Kaya Co. fellowship an opportunity to come home for the better purpose of giving back and strengthening the nation that greatly shaped the woman she is today.


Gianina Yumul


Gianina is a rising junior at Harvard pursuing art history and architecture studies, a field in which she hope to explore and meld her interests in museum outreach, sustainable urban planning, and education reform. She was drawn to Kaya Co. because she wanted to learn about her role in the Filipino diaspora, and in doing so use her strengths to help tackle problems of inequality in her home country. When she’s not studying or sleeping, Gianina is most likely playing ukulele, searching for her next meal, dancing, or enjoying the company of family and friends.


Connie Truong

Hope in a Bottle

Connie is a passionate Sudoku solver, an avid Tumblr blogger, and an aspiring social justice activist. She sees the world as a blank canvas; she’s a glass half-full kind of girl. She doesn’t believe the world is black and white; she sees color and many shades of gray.


Sarah Lynne Peñalosa

Teach for the Philippines

Simply put, being a Filipina American colors the way Sarah moves through this world. It’s something she is both proud of and, to be honest, slightly embarrassed about–proud for the rich culture, history, food, you name it, yet also embarrassed at how she’s not completely sure what this term means to her. Through Kaya Co, she hopes to help bridge the gap among Filipino communities transnationally, while educating herself and others about this identity that many can relate to.


Julmar Carcedo


Julmar was born and raised in Davao. After high school, he was chosen to represent the Philippines in the Li Po Chun UWC of Hong Kong where he studied the IB curriculum and involved himself in the Initiative for Peace: Focus on Mindanao and Help for Domestic Helpers. Now at Brown, Julmar celebrates being Filipino even in small ways and the Kaya Co. fellowship is a large way to do so – to give back to his fellowmen while learning more about the Filipino-American diaspora.


Aldric Ulep


While growing up in Hawaiʻi, Aldric felt comfortable with his Filipino American identity; after learning about issues in the Philippines, he grew to realize that comfort is not enough. Through Kaya Collaborative, Aldric hopes to get a better sense of how to personally engage with Filipino issues and also empower others to engage in their own capacities. Aldric studies U.S. public policy on environmental and natural resource issues, especially water.


April Alcantara

Kythe Foundation

With regards to academics, April is currently studying Human Biology and on the pre-med track. Outside of academics, April loves being involved in the Pilipino American Student Union at school, and this year, she’s one of the co-chairs of Kayumanggi, the only Filipino folk dance troupe in Stanford. She’s really grateful for the opportunity to work with Kaya Co. to unite two things she’s passionate about: health and her Filipino roots!


AnneMarie Ladlad

Route +63

AnneMarie Ladlad will be a senior studying Humanities and Strategic Communication at Seattle University this upcoming school year. A recent class on social innovation inspired her to find a way to combine her passion for public relations and her new interest in the social enterprise sector, which led her to the Kaya Co fellowship. She looks forward to working with Route +63 to promote travel and tourism in the Philippines.


Nicole Salvador


Nicole is a rising senior concentrating in English, also studying Spanish and Portuguese in order to thrive in communication in the realm of development. Raised in Los Angeles and only experiencing the Philippines through brief pockets of time, Nicole hopes to create a sustainable dialogue with her roots. When not making home movies, taking inappropriately long naps, or ranting about privilege, she is most likely thinking about churros.


Mika Reyes

Gifts & Graces

Mika Reyes is a usually hyper, sometimes neurotic and always smiling dancer, diver, occasional blogger, and food-lover at Wesleyan University. She’s always been drawn to the business and entrepreneurial world, but fusing it with helping out the community makes it an even more fulfilling experience. Studying abroad has emphasized just how much she loves the country that copyrights jeepneys, cooks up the best dishes and is home to some of the happiest people in the world and she hopes to give back to the wonderful Filipino community as much as it has given to her.


Payton Fugate-Laus


Payton Fugate-Laus is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a degree in Business, specializing in Marketing, and a minor in Design. Born and raised in Ohio, Payton has become deeply involved in the Midwest Filipino-American community through social change and dance. She is excited to take her training and enthusiasm to the Philippines with Kaya Co.


Alfred Dicioco


Alfred spent most of his life in Quezon City before moving to Los Angeles with his family. He graduated from the University of Southern California and worked as a reporter for Alhambra Source, Inquirer, and Rappler. As part of the Kaya Co. fellowship, he would like to examine personal stories on migration and shed light on issues that affect separated families.


Micaela Beltran

Ashoka Philippines

Other than her absurd longing to be on MasterChef Pinoy Edition, the foundation for the rest of Micaela’s aspirations comes from her massive(ly) Filipino family who helped her recognize their worth. With those roots in mind, she wants to work to change the future for all Filipinos and break down many of our limitations.

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