|Yasmeen Adams is currently a senior at John Jay College majoring in Political Science and minoring in English. She is currently completing her fellowship at BronxConnect, an organization providing youth and young adults faith- and community-based alternatives to detention, incarceration, and violence prevention work In her role, she assists the case manager with her caseloads, writes court reports for participants, facilitates workshops, and stands in court. In the future, she would like to obtain her JD / MSW and work as an immigration lawyer with families and children. Outside of Pinkerton she also works with various activist groups in NYC working on reducing gun violence in marginalized communities and addressing how gun violence affects black, brown, and LGBTQ individuals.|
|Sharon Bardales is an undergraduate student pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Economics with a minor in Political Science. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Sharon is serving in the Community Justice Unit at The Legal Aid Society, where she works closely with organizations that use the Cure Violence Model, a community-based approach to preventing violence. Sharon has also developed a new workshop focused on financial literacy and is facilitating the workshop to youth ages 16-24 with justice-involvement. Before Pinkerton, Sharon was a community organizer for Riders Alliance, an organization focused on making public transportation accessible and affordable citywide. After graduation, Sharon plans on getting an M.A. in Economics and working on economic development for black and brown communities.|
|Aliya Birnbaum is a graduate student in the Forensic Psychology Master’s Program. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, Aliya is placed at The Bronx Defenders, a nonprofit public defending firm that focuses on transforming how people from low-income communities in the Bronx are represented in the justice system. The Bronx Defenders are the pioneers in the holistic model of care, which attempts to meet not only the legal needs of people in the community, but also their social support needs. There, Aliya works in their Adolescent Defense Project, where she advocates and addresses social needs for adolescent clients in criminal and family court. Her responsibilities in this role are to provide oral and written advocacy in the court by understanding how trauma can impact her clients’ lives and their decision-making process. In addition to the Pinkerton Fellowship, Aliya is responsible for the policy work in Dr. Haney-Caron’s Youth Law & Policy Lab. She has contributed to the implementation of youth justice reform by aiding in a presentation to The Legal Aid Society, and helping demonstrate the effectiveness of the Risks-Needs-Responsivity model to District Attorney’s offices across the country. After graduation Aliya plans to get her PhD in Clinical Forensic Psychology and work as a psychologist for justice-involved youth.|
|HC Cristina is a graduate student in the Forensic Mental Health Counseling (FMHC) program. As a Pinkerton Fellow, HC is placed at Getting Out & Staying Out (GOSO), a Harlem-based organization dedicated to supporting and empowering male-identified individuals, ages 16-24, who have criminal justice involvement. As a fellow who provides direct clinical services to participants, HC’s primary responsibilities include performing psychosocial assessments, designing and running therapeutic groups, developing and facilitating a new job curriculum, and utilizing various modalities to provide individual psychotherapy. Her extensive background in juvenile mental health services and her current role at GOSO are providing a foundation for a clinical career in youth correctional facilities. After earning her FMHC degree and license, HC plans to pursue a doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a focus on forensic populations. HC and her partner, who is also a therapist, plan to eventually open a psychotherapy clinic in Oakland, California for LGBTQ people of color. When not immersed in mental health services, HC spends her time making art, playing music, and hanging out with her fiancé, three cats, and new puppy.|
|Sarah Dure is a second-year graduate student pursuing a degree in Forensic Mental Health Counseling at John Jay CUNY. Sarah is completing her Pinkerton Fellowship at Promesa, a residential treatment program for youth who have had contact with the criminal justice system. A majority of the youth are in treatment for substance use and various mental health needs. Sarah’s responsibilities at Promesa include leading group therapy, providing individual counseling, conducting client treatment plans, and being a positive role model for the youth. In addition to the fellowship, Sarah has been involved in both the mental health recovery and mindfulness and modification research labs. Sarah aspires to get a PhD in clinical psychology and work as a forensic psychologist specifically serving youth.|
|Bailey Ekness is a senior majoring in Criminal Justice Management. As a Pinkerton Undergraduate Community fellow, she is placed at the Kings Against Violence Initiative (KAVI), an organization that aims to help victims of community violence through hospital, school, and community intervention. Bailey’s responsibilities include working in the Kings County Hospital Emergency Department to support victims of community violence. She also works with high school students to promote anti-violence, resilience, and healing within their lives and communities. Additionally, she is currently in the Honors Program and is the treasurer of the Youth Justice Club at John Jay. After graduation, she would like to get her PhD and become a correctional educator.|
|Hannah Evans is a graduate student pursuing a Master’s degree in Forensic Mental Health Counseling. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at EAC Queens Mental Health TASC, a mental health diversion program, which works with the Queens Mental Health Courts. This program assists in diverting those with severe mental illnesses and co-occurring substance use issues out of the criminal justice system and back into the community. As an extern, Hannah works primarily with young adults, ages 19-24, facilitating intensive case management and guidance through their treatment mandate. Hannah administers client intake assessments and builds genuine relationships with her clients during weekly check-ins and CBT interactive journaling sessions to address personal goals and any treatment concerns. Advocating on behalf of her clients, she collaborates with treatment providers to address her clients’ mental health goals and assists case managers with psychosocial reports and updates for the courts. After graduation, Hannah plans to obtain her LMHC licensure in New York and continue advocating for youth and underserved populations with serious mental health illnesses.|
|Shavelle Franklin is a senior and first generation college student currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Sociology: Inequality and Social Justice with an advanced certificate in Dispute Resolution. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Shavelle is placed at the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO), a jail-to-job pipeline program, which supports adults returning home from incarceration and justice-involved youth ages 18-25 obtain employment. Specifically, Shavelle works with the Youth Services Department’s Credible Messenger Initiative (CMI), a mentoring program that supports young adults struggling to get through CEO’s program by facilitating workshops that teach them skills for finding and maintaining employment. Outside of the fellowship, Shavelle is the Historian of Sigma Kappa Xi Multicultural Sorority, a philanthropic organization that is dedicated to empowering women and giving back to the community. In the future, Shavelle hopes to work directly with justice involved youth providing re-entry and education services.|
|Alexandra Frederick is in her second year as a Forensic Psychology graduate student. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Alexandra’s placement is at the District Attorney’s Office in Queens. As an undergraduate at SUNY Cortland, Alexandra undertook a research project on psychopathy; she continues to research psychopathy at John Jay. Beyond this, Alexandra is involved with research projects pertaining to the topic of psychopathy within John Jay College of Criminal Justice, as well as at her undergraduate university, SUNY Cortland. In the future, she hopes to pursue a doctorate in Clinical Psychology with a forensic focus.|
|Kyle Goetz is a graduate student in his second year of the Forensic Psychology Master of Arts Program. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, he is placed at Strive International, a non-profit job readiness organization in East Harlem. At Strive, Kyle works as part of the Connections to Care team providing mental health support to all clients who are 16 years or older. In this role, he facilitates weekly psychoeducation lessons with all programs, conducts mental health screenings, and engages in one-on-one counseling sessions. Outside of the fellowship, Kyle works as a research assistant in Dr. Charles Stone's Social Memory Lab to examine the effects of socially-selective memory on jury-decision making. Previously, Kyle was an intern at the William R. Sharpe Jr. Hospital, where he engaged in Dialectical Behavior Therapy with 18-26 year-old patients deemed incompetent to stand trial by the West Virginia Supreme Court. Additionally, Kyle also served as a school tutor/mentor to youth involved in the criminal justice system at The Bartlett House in West Virginia. After graduation, Kyle plans to work with the State Troopers or the FBI before eventually pursuing a PhD in clinical psychology.|
|Sebastian Liang is a senior at John Jay College of Criminal Justice pursuing an International Criminal Justice degree. He is a Dean’s List student and was initially drawn to the work of youth justice through personal life experiences. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Sebastian is placed at Exalt Youth, an organization that works to elevate expectations for personal success and outcomes for justice-involved youth, ages 15-19. There, he develops relationships with students, encourages students to strive for their personal goals, shares resources to increase access to higher education, and aids in the enrollment and transfer process of students into transfer schools and GED programs. Additionally, he assists in internship placement, building court relations in all five boroughs, and developing strong relationships with new referral partners. After graduation, Sebastian plans on pursuing a dual degree graduate program to obtain his Master’s degree in Criminal Justice and Public Administration. His future career goal is to utilize policy reform towards the criminal justice system to not only make it less punitive, but to also help re-establish trust between communities and the justice system.|
|Riley Linares is a senior pursuing a major in Criminology and a minor in Psychology. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Riley is placed at The Fortune Society, an organization dedicated to providing those who have come into contact with the criminal justice system a second chance to rebuild their lives through innovative services and advocacy. Riley is currently working in both the Employment Services Department as well as the Education Department. As an Employment Services intern, Riley co-facilitates the Career Pathways Program, a job readiness workshop and support group for youth, ages 16-23. She also assists in writing resumes and giving mock interviews to various clients. In the Education Department, Riley assists with the GED and HSE classes and performs intake assessments for the youth. In the future, Riley plans to pursue further education in social work and forensic mental health counseling. She hopes to continue working with individuals involved in the justice system in the nonprofit sector and potentially start her own nonprofit organization. Outside of the fellowship, Riley is the Secretary of the Environmental Club at John Jay.|
|Gaby Montano is a senior at John Jay College majoring in Youth Justice Studies and Comparative Prison Studies in the CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies Program. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Gaby is placed at Exalt, where she works directly with youth involved in the court system, ages 15 - 19, to support and enhance their employability, education, and professionalism. She assists with the recruitment of cohort cycles and builds relationships with students to help them pursue their future. Beyond the Pinkerton Fellowship, Gaby is currently the president of the Latin American Student Organization at John Jay, a Thomas W. Smith Fellow, a student in the Honors Program, a member of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and a research student on the Latinx student experience at John Jay. She has interned at several organizations that focus on youth justice in New York like BronxConnect, Osborne Association, and Girl Vow. Through these roles, she has conducted workshops at different facilities such as foster homes, Children’s Village, and Rikers Island. After graduation, Gaby intends to focus her graduate studies on mentorship programming and alternatives to incarceration for youth involved in the justice system. Additionally, she wants to pursue direct service work with the goal of one day creating her own non-profit that seeks to reduce the number of youth in prison.|
|Nanci Avalos Omaña is a first-generation college student pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Spanish, with a concentration in Translation and Interpretation, and a double minor in Digital Media and Journalism and Latin American and Latino/a studies. Nanci is a strong language justice and immigrant rights advocate, especially for youth. Previously, she worked at The Door and Safe Passage Project, where she assisted attorneys on cases involving unaccompanied minors facing deportation. It was there that she found her passion for working with youth. As a Pinkerton Fellow, she is placed at the Queens Youth Justice Center at the Center for Court Innovation, where she works with youth placed in QUEST, an alternative detention program. At the Queens Youth Justice Center, she serves both as a court liaison advocating for participants on their scheduled court dates and as a caseworker co-facilitating poetry, arts therapy, and court language groups. Beyond Pinkerton, Nanci is the Editor-In-Chief of the John Jay Sentinel. After graduation, Nanci plans to pursue a master’s degree in Social Work while continuing to advocate for procedural and transitional justice for immigrant and justice-involved youth.|
|Marc Suda is a senior at John Jay College majoring in Computer Science and minoring in Security Management. He was born and raised in Long Island City, Queens and has seen the development and subsequent gentrification of the neighborhood over the past several years. This experience has played a role in sparking Marc’s interest to help his community. His interest in advocacy came from his volunteer and community outreach experiences throughout his earlier college years. Marc wants to advocate for those who are not given the proper tools to advocate for themselves. As a Pinkerton Fellow, Marc is placed at Artistic Noise, an organization that provides artistic practice to justice-involved youth. He is excited to be a part of the team at Artistic Noise and is grateful to support young people on their journey. At Artistic Noise, he will be facilitating job readiness workshops and will also assistant therapists in their sessions. Marc’s future professional goals are still changing with every internship and new experience. His perspective and aspirations are continuously being molded by those that impact him throughout his college years. Marc is confident that, through his future endeavors, he will make an impact in people’s lives.|
|Lauren Stepinski is a first-generation college student in her last year of the Forensic Mental Health Counseling Master of Arts program. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at the EAC Bronx TASC - Mental Health Court program. Bronx TASC is an alternative to incarceration program that provides case management for clients with a serious mental illness with or without a co-occurring substance use. Lauren primarily works with clients ages 18 to 25 for weekly check-ins, journaling, and intake assessments. She conducts intakes and helps prepare psychosocial reports to be presented to the courts. Once clients are found eligible for the program and accepted, Lauren manages the case and helps connect clients to mental health and substance use treatment programs for the duration of the court mandate. Upon completion of the Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellowship and Forensic Mental Health Counseling program, she intends to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology. Lauren's professional goal is to work in the field of forensic psychology conducting forensic evaluations and providing counseling services.|
|Kamar Tazi is a rising senior at the Macaulay Honors College at John Jay where she majors in Forensic Psychology and minors in English. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Kamar is placed at The Children’s Village’s ARCHES and ICM programs. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Kamar is placed at The Children’s Village’s Arches and ICM (Intensive Community Monitoring) programs, where she works with youth ages 13-24 with past justice involvement. Children’s Village programs use a variety of approaches to help participants develop new skills and pursue their educational and career goals.” Kamar has conducted original research about clinical assessments with justice-involved youth as a McNair Scholar. Her current project, which is supported by the American Psychology Law Society’s Access Path to Psychology and Law Experience award, examines outcomes for justice-involved youth who go through community-based programming.. Kamar is currently working in two research labs where she has been able to further explore topics related to youth justice. After her undergraduate degree, Kamar plans to obtain a PhD in Clinical Psychology with a forensic concentration. She hopes to eventually conduct research that will guide and inform practices and programming with youth who have contact with the justice system to ensure equitable treatment and care.|
|Vinila Varghese is a senior in the Macaulay Honors College at John Jay College of Criminal Justice where, through the CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies program, she created her two majors: Race and Criminal Justice, and Philosophy and Law. She is placed at the Legal Aid Society’s Community Justice Unit (CJU) where she works on projects related to the Freedom of Information Law, NYPD Gang Database, and other criminal justice reform initiatives. The CJU works with Cure Violence sites in all five boroughs by providing information on community members’ rights through workshops, connecting communities to services, advocating for clients on pre-arrest and pre-arraignment services, and aiding clients through re-entry issues that arise in the post-conviction context. Prior to this, Vinila worked as a Fatherhood Engagement intern at the Midtown Community Court, a Peer Ambassador at John Jay, and a tutor at the Mexican American Students’ Alliance in the South Bronx. Outside of the fellowship, she is the co-captain of a Quidditch team (the Macaulay Marauders), an Honors Peer Leader, and the president and founder of the John Jay Chapter of “Leading Womxn of Tomorrow.” After graduation, Vinila plans to go to law school and fulfill her life goal of becoming a social justice advocate.|
|Audrey Victor is currently a first-generation college student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in both International Criminal Justice and Modern History. As a Pinkerton Undergraduate Fellow, she is placed at S.O.U.L Sisters Leadership Community, a non-profit organization that aims to mobilize systems‐involved girls and femmes of color– black, brown, and indigenous – to interrupt cycles of state violence, poverty, and oppression. Audrey particularly works as the Community Relations Intern at S.O.U.L Sisters, recruiting for their Youth Leaders Board program and establishing and maintaining partnerships with key stakeholders in their community. Outside of the Pinkerton Fellowship, Audrey was a part of the Prison-to-College Pipeline Program, where she visited the Otisville Correctional Facility once a month to attend classes with incarcerated John Jay students. There, Audrey learned the importance of restorative justice and the plethora of ways it could be implemented in prison reform work. After graduation, Audrey plans to attend law school and become an immigration attorney.|
|Akanksha Anand is an international student currently pursuing a Masters in Forensic Mental Health Counseling. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at The Bridge, an organization providing mental health, rehabilitation and housing services to the most vulnerable in the community. Akanksha is currently working with the Forensic Assertive Community Treatment Team and the Compliance and Training department. While working with the Forensic ACT team she provides direct clinical services on an interdisciplinary team to individuals with serious mental illness, who have a history of multiple hospitalizations and justice involvement due to their poor history of treatment adherence in traditional outpatient settings. In her role working with the Director of Quality Initiatives and Training, she will be developing trainings on cultural competence and supporting the implementation of Clinical Risk Management Procedures. Akanksha hopes to graduate and eventually become a licensed mental health specialist with Doctors without Borders.|
|Andrea Reddy is a graduate student in the Forensic Mental Health Counseling program. She pursued the Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellowship to make a positive impact on New York's criminal justice system. Prior to the fellowship, Andrea held an investigative position where she witnessed first-hand the consequences justice-involved youths faced while being deprived of opportunities for reform. Her passion for rehabilitative justice landed her at the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES), where she works for the Court Employment Project (CEP) utilizing person-centered and trauma-informed therapeutic approaches to help participants ages 15-24 facing felony charges. Andrea facilitates mental health assessments, individual counseling sessions, and direct service to combat recidivism and promote professional and personal growth among her participants in Brooklyn. After graduation, Andrea plans to obtain her license in mental health counseling and pursue a career in law enforcement where she can apply her psychology background to make informed decisions and keep the community safe.|
|Auset Alexander is a graduate student in the Forensic Psychology Master’s Program. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at The Bronx Defenders, a public defense organization dedicated to going beyond the courtroom by providing individualized representation and holistic client care. Specifically, Auset works in the Adolescent Defense Project where she provides social support and advocates for adolescents (ages 16 - 26) in adult criminal court. In this role, she works in a collaborative effort with lawyers and social workers to meet the direct needs of her clients-- including oral and written advocacy in court, client interviews, visiting clients currently incarcerated on Rikers Island, and contacting supplementary organizations. In addition to her fellowship, Auset serves as a project coordinator in Dr. Allwood’s Child and Adolescent Stress and Trauma Research Lab, where she administers various cognitive tests to study the effects of stress and trauma on adolescent development. In the future, Auset hopes to obtain a PhD in clinical psychology with a focus in forensic and law.|
|Bianca Hayles is a first-generation college student pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Political Science: Urban Politics and Public Policy with a minor in Philosophy. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Bianca is placed at Friends of Island Academy (Friends), where she's an Education Advocate. In the Harlem office at the Kalief Browder Center of Education, a jail-to-school pipeline program, Bianca helps justice-involved youth from the ages of 16-24 access educational resources, such as obtaining a high school diploma, and High School Equivalency Diploma (HSE). Lastly, Bianca is eager to have the chance to go to Rikers Island, being a voice and point of contact for various legal, academic, professional and social services for many youths held there. Outside of the fellowship, Bianca is the Secretary of the Mock Trial Association where she mentors and prepares John Jay students to compete in Mock Trial competitions. After graduation, Bianca plans to attend law school and work directly with justice-involved youth, through her own nonprofit she yearns to create in the near future.
|Brenneis Nesbitt is a senior pursuing a degree in Law and Society, with minors in Sociology and Dispute Resolution. He is a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success and a recipient of the National Engaged Leader Award. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Brenneis is placed at Children’s Village where he works with youth from 16 to 24 years old who have had some criminal justice involvement. As a Credible Messenger/Mentor through their ARCHES and Harlem Justice Community Programs, Brenneis plans and facilitates informational meetings and workshops, connects participants to employment and community resources, and assists participants with learning how to advocate for themselves. Upon graduation, he plans to attend law school in order to fulfill his goal of becoming a criminal defense attorney. Throughout his career, he hopes to continue empowering impoverished communities, marginalized groups and future leaders to combat institutional inequality and be fierce advocates for criminal justice reform.|
|Casey Buonocore is a graduate student enrolled in the BA/MA Program in Forensic Psychology. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, Casey is currently placed at EAC Queens, where she is an extern for both TASC and CRAN. TASC provides forensic case management and alternatives to incarceration for individuals living with a serious mental illness and, often, co-occurring substance use, while CRAN provides transitional assistance to those reentering society following incarceration. In her role as an extern, Casey administers psychosocial assessments, maintains relationships with clients through weekly check-ins, collaborates with treatment providers in order to address clients’ needs, assists case managers with periodic court updates, and supports clients’ goals. After earning her BA and MA, Casey plans on pursuing a doctoral degree in forensic clinical psychology in order to continue her advocacy for justice-involved individuals living with mental illness.|
|Cecilia Allan is a first-generation college student from Canada working towards her Master’s in Forensic Mental Health Counseling. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at EAC Networks’ Bronx TASC, an alternative to incarceration program which works with mental health courts to divert those suffering from mental illness out of the criminal justice system and into the community. Cecilia works primarily with young adults between the ages of 18-24, most of whom suffer from severe mental illnesses and co-occurring substance abuse issues. She conducts intakes and prepares written psychosocial evaluations for presentation to the court. Following their acceptance to the program, Cecilia manages a caseload of clients, connecting them with mental health services and substance abuse treatment providers in the community. She also engages clients in counseling sessions to address progress and help them reach their personal goals. Upon completion of her masters, Cecilia intends to pursue a PhD and hopes to work as a clinician for youth who have spent time in the criminal justice system for a sexual offense to help with community reintegration and sexual violence prevention.
|Christopher Cazares is a senior who majors in Criminology and minors in Anthropology. Chris is the Senior Representative of Student Council and the current Vice President of the Youth Justice Club. Chris became passionate about youth justice through his personal life experiences and now wants to change the way youth are perceived in the criminal justice system. Chris is currently placed at The Fortune Society where he is an Education Counselor Assistant. He conducts intake for new clients, meets with current clients for individual counseling sessions, facilitates tutoring programs, and teaches in classrooms. Chris plans to continue to learn and help the clients at Fortune to provide them with tools such as education so they have the drive to succeed.
|Jaelyn Buggs is a student pursuing a Baccalaureate/Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology. Jaelyn is a Pinkerton Community Fellow placed at BronxConnect, a non-profit Alternative to Incarceration (ATI)/ Alternative to Detention organization, dedicated to “Keep Urban Youths Out of Jail for Life” by serving youths and young adults, age 14-24, who are facing felony and misdemeanor charges. Jaelyn is an Assistant Case Manager in the ATI and the BronxConnect Beyond and Misdemeanor Department. As an Assistant Case Manager, Jaelyn is responsible for youth compliance monitoring, evaluating the needs of each youth, and recommending and facilitating plans to meet the needs of each youth. As BronxConnect is a mandated program, Jaelyn is required to write court reports and updates, attend youth’s legal proceedings, and advocates based on the youth’s involvement at BronxConnect. Jaelyn plans to pursue her PhD in clinical psychology.|
|Jessica Castillo is a junior in the CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies program, pursuing a degree in International Criminology and Deviance in Social Behavior. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Jessica is placed at The Fortune Society, a non-profit organization that believes that individuals have the power to change and transform their lives through educational and advocative service programs. In both the Education department and the Alternative-To-Incarceration department, Jessica ensures that clients are enrolled in programs that meet their needs, conducts weekly individual counseling sessions, and assists in the Advanced Minds and Music program and The Young Adult Literacy Program. She looks forward to developing inspiring workshops and curriculum that inspires clients to share their lived experiences to self-advocate. Upon graduation, Jessica plans on attending graduate school and focusing her research on the innovative, therapeutic and rehabilitative power of music and storytelling.
|Kenya Edmonds is in her senior year majoring in Law & Society. As an active John Jay Honors student, she manages to remain on the Dean's List by maintaining a 3.9 GPA. Also, she is a leading role model in the CunyEdge program. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Kenya works at CASES where her primary role is serving as a placement site monitor for the Summer Youth Employment Program. This program provides summer jobs to youth from ages 14-24, and CASES specifically works with youth who have barriers to employment including, involvement with the justice system, foster care system, or homelessness. As a gatekeeper in the program, she monitors multiple placement sites where she assists participants with developing a professional work etiquette and maintains recordkeeping within the DYCD Youth Employment Program system. Upon graduation, she plans to attend law school where she will continue on her journey of fighting for criminal justice reform.
|Krystle Salvati is currently a junior at the Macaulay Honors College at John Jay where she studies Law & Society. She is currently an executive board member of the Humans of Macaulay Club and is a Peer Advisor at John Jay’s Academic Advisement Center. Her previous professional experiences have included, but are not limited to, an internship with Judge Gomez at the Bronx Family Court and an internship in federal Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s office. Krystle is currently placed at the Legal Aid Society’s Community Justice Unit where she works on projects connected to the Freedom of Information Law, the NYPD Criminal Group Database, and the people that are impacted by both. The Community Justice Unit also works with under twenty partner organizations that use the Cure Violence Model, and works with each partner organization to teach participants about their rights and provide legal advice.
|Mary Famuyide is a senior who double majors in Economics and Criminology. She is a John Jay ACE scholar, an honors student, and a member of the Alpha Kappa Delta International Sociology Honor Society. Mary is also a Dean’s List student and recipient of the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women Summer Scholarship. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Mary is placed at Exalt Youth where her primary responsibilities are providing internship placements and job training for currently and formerly court involved youth from ages 15-19. She also assists in the building of cycles, as well as developing relationships with students that foster the pursuit of goals they plan to achieve. After graduating from John Jay College, Mary plans on attending a dual degree program in law school, in which she intends to obtain her Juris Doctorate and a Masters in Social Work.
|Nadya Gutierrez is a first generation college student in her junior year pursuing a degree in Forensic Psychology with a minor in Addiction studies in hopes of becoming a Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor (CASAC). She is a part of the John Jay Honors program and Phi Eta Sigma Honors Society, as well as, treasurer of the Youth Justice Club. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, she is placed at Safe Space/Sheltering Arms, where she serves as a Life Coach and Resource to the Far Rockaway Community Youth Center. She primarily works with the ARCHES program which focuses on helping youth ages 16-24 who are on probation. As a life coach and mentor, Nadya facilitates workshops on relevant life topics, conducts intake and attends one-on-one meetings with participants. In addition to participating in the Pinkerton Community Fellowship, Nadya serves as a tutor on Rikers Island through her partnership with the Petey Greene Program. After graduation, she plans to enroll in a graduate program for social work and work towards becoming a Licensed Master Social Worker.
|Najah Cooper is a junior-transfer student majoring in Criminal Justice. Although she has had experience working with younger kids, she desired to be proactively engaged in the juvenile justice system, providing guidance and mentorship to minority individuals. Part of her desire stems from living in a minority community where she has observed how easy it is to get caught up in the “fast life.” Currently positioned at Youth Action Youth Build, Najah works with youth aged 17-24. Her tasks, though not all, include administering TABE tests, facilitating college and employment fairs, conducting assessment interviews, and creating and maintaining files for incoming students. She also serves as a liaison between the staff and students in order to aid in providing the students with the effective resources that will allow them to be successful after they graduate from the program. Najah is a Dean’s List Student and upon graduating, intends on pursuing her Master’s degree in Social Work.|
|Nascha Streng is a first-generation college student from Paris, France, currently pursuing her Master of Arts degree in Forensic Psychology. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, Nascha is placed at the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES), where she specfically works for CASES’ Court Employment Project (CEP) in Harlem, which services youths ages, 16-24, facing incarceration on felony charges. Nascha serves as a case coordinator by providing her participants with linkage to education, employment training, and health and well-being support. Her clients’ unique needs, risks, and strengths are identified and answered with evidence-based, family-focused, and trauma-informed programs. Upon completion of her Master’s degree, Nascha intends to obtain a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology while continuing to advocate for justice-involved youth.|
|Paula-Camila Caceres Serrano is a junior pursuing a Law and Society and Spanish BA double major with a minor in Interdisciplinary Studies. As a Pinkerton Fellow, she is placed at the Red Hook Community Justice Center and works specifically with the Peacemaking Program as a Junior Peacemaker. Her role allows her to act as the “triage” between Senior Peacemakers/ District Attorney’s and the clients that walk through those doors every day. Beyond Pinkerton, Paula-Camila is the Treasurer of John Jay’s Student Government, which she has been a part of since her freshman year. She looks forward to another challenging and rewarding academic year.
|Steven Vivas is a first-generation college student who majors in Criminology with a double minori in Latin American And Latina/o Studies and Dispute Resolution. Prior to being a Pinkerton Community Fellow, he worked with the Unaccompanied Latin American Minor (ULAMP) project at the Safe Passage Project. There, he assisted attorneys who represented unaccompanied minors facing deportation. This experience motivated him to work with youth. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Steven was placed at the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO), where he works directly with young adults as part of the Credible Messenger Initiative (CMI). During his time at CEO, he facilitates workshops and engages with participants of the program to help them find full-time employment. He created a facilitator manual for CMI that was implemented throughout CEO. Steven plans to attend law school and eventually become an attorney for justice-involved youth and undocumented youth.
|Wilmarie Feliz is a graduate student in the Forensic Mental Health Counseling Master’s Program. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at Getting Out and Staying Out (GOSO), a non-profit youth justice organization focused on empowering young men ages 16-24 with previous criminal justice involvement through education, employment, financial independence and emotional well-being. Wilmarie’s contributions to GOSO consist of providing direct clinical services and facilitating job readiness workshops. Wilmarie also conducts psychosocial assessments for incoming participants as well as individual and group therapy sessions. Wilmarie will be incorporating Mental Health Literacy series as part of her Legacy Project into new workshops and group sessions with participants of the program. The idea is to provide participants with the space and information to become more aware of the ways mental health influence their daily lives.
|Andrea Akinbola is in her junior year at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, where she is majoring in Political Science with a double minor in Philosophy and Africana Studies. Though she has had a fairly long history of working with youths through recreational activities, she craved to be part of a community that is actively working towards reforming the juvenile justice system. Her drive for juvenile justice reform placed her as the Pinkerton Community Fellow at the Center for Court Innovation Queen’s Youth Justice Center, where she works with youths who have been charged with low level offenses. Through the Queen’s Youth Justice Center, youths are given the opportunity to participate in after school programs, know your rights workshops, art projects and myriad case management services. Additionally, Andrea serves as the president of the African Students Association for the 2017-2018 academic year and is actively involved in other student led organizations on campus. She finds joy in being part of student led organizations on and off the John Jay Campus. After graduating from John Jay College, Andrea plans on attending law school in the fall of 2019, where she will study Family Law.|
|Stephany Betances is a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow working on a master’s degree in Forensic Psychology. She is currently placed at Brooklyn Defender Services under the Brooklyn Adolescent Representation Team (BART). Stephany is directly working with youth between the ages of 17 – 21. Part of the work she is doing with her clients includes conducting assessments, case management, education engagement, and most importantly advocating for her clients in and out of the courtroom. Prior to starting her graduate career at John Jay College, she was an administrator at a charter school in the South Bronx, where her passion for working with adolescents and advocating for social justice reform was reinforced. While pursuing her master’s degree she intends to work on research that will delve into the possible chemical brain imbalances that cause people to commit extraordinary criminal acts. Her ultimate goal is to have a better understanding of youth social justice, not only to be a better advocate, but also to help cultivate a culture that is committed to using more humanizing words towards justice involved individuals.|
|Maryam Conteh is a first generation college student pursuing a degree in Criminology with a minor in Human Rights studies. She is a Percy Ellis Sutton SEEK student and a member of the Chi Alpha Epsilon National Honor Society. She’s a current senior at John Jay College, after graduation she plans to enroll in a graduate program for social work. As a Pinkerton Fellow, she is placed at CASES, where her primary responsibility this summer has been serving with the Summer Youth Employment Program at CASES. This program provides summer jobs to youth from ages 14-24. CASES specifically provides employment opportunities for youth who have barriers to employment including involvement with the justice system, foster care system, or homelessness. She assist with this program in a variety of ways including through monitoring worksites, assisting with recordkeeping, and working directly with participants to help ensure their success at work. In addition to serving on SYEP, she also provides support to the teachers in the classroom and also tutors student on one-on-one basis. In addition to assisting with the HSE program and administering standardized tests, Maryam also assists the JAG specialist on finding internships and job placements for participants.|
|Alexandra Ehrreich is a senior in the Macaulay Honors College at John Jay, studying Criminal Justice, Psychology, and Arabic. She is a Dean’s List Student as well as an alumna of the Vera Fellowship at John Jay. Currently, Alexandra is placed at Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison as a Pinkerton Community Fellow. At Hudson Link, Alexandra works as an academic advisor as well as doing policy research and advocacy for Hudson Link’s students. As an academic advisor, Alexandra helps newly returned students navigate college enrollment and coursework. As an advocate, she works with Hudson Link’s collegiate partners to ensure the rights of its students and any students with previous justice involvement. Alexandra also helps to create the weekly newsletters, to plan and execute trainings for staff, and to coordinate events for students at several facilities in upstate New York. In her spare time, Alexandra is a co-founder and president of a policy-writing club on campus, volunteers for different non-profits and advocacy groups, and enjoys playing music and sports. Her future plans include travel, continuing work in the non-profit world, and pursuing a law degree.|
|Jessica L. Gaskin is a graduate student in the Forensic Psychology Master’s Program at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at The Bronx Defenders, a holistic, client-centered public defense office and social service provider. Jessica works in the Adolescent Defense Project, supporting and advocating for adolescents who are tried in adult court. In this role, she conducts client interviews to inform her written and oral court advocacy on behalf of her clients. She is also creating a comprehensive adolescent resource guide, and visiting the various organizations throughout NYC where The Bronx Defenders refer young clients to, in order to gain a better understanding of the services they offer. Outside of her fellowship commitments, Jessica conducts research on childhood stress and trauma, and Mindfulness and Modification Therapy. She is writing her thesis on concordance rates between self-report and interview-based assessments of trauma exposure and substance abuse. Jessica will be applying to doctoral programs in clinical psychology to further her goals of working in the social justice and mental health fields, primarily servicing system-involved youth.|
|Justin Guaman is a junior at John Jay, where he is majoring in Forensic Psychology and double minoring in Communications and Public Administration. Upon graduation he intends to pursue a Masters in counseling. He is a speaker at InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and a former team leader for the Peer Ambassador leadership program at John Jay. His desire to work in Youth Justice was birthed much from when he was younger and lived a troublesome life-style. After coming into a change of life-style through his faith he wanted to bring change to youth who struggled like him. Justin is placed at Friends of Island Academy, where he is a youth leader at the Kalief Browder Education Center, a Jail-to-School Pipeline Project. On multiple occasions he has gone to Rikers Island to meet with youth to help create an educational plan. Most of the time Justin works at the Harlem office, where the school is located, and builds relationship with the youth through outings and activities. He also plans workshops and helps orientate youth into the educational programs.|
|Roodjerry Guerrier is a junior year at John Jay College, where he is majoring in public administration. As a passionate scholar, he joined this fellowship program to learn and deepen his interest in social justice issues. His prior experience working with at-risk youth in Brownsville as a mentor and youth advocate for Medgar Evers College and exposure to our criminal justice system’s mishandling of youth as a John Jay APPLE Corps student has prepared and inspired him to further make a positive difference in disadvantaged youth lives. Now placed as a Pinkerton Community Fellow at Good Shepherd Services’ non-secure placement division, he assists with their rehabilitation. In a holistic approach, he is responsible for finding and connecting youth to outside resources, assisting with trauma assessments, creating or co-facilitating life skills workshops and group activities, role modeling or building lasting positive relationships, and building a financial literacy curriculum. Upon graduating, he hopes to pursue a master’s degree and uses his experience to do policy work targeting social justice issues.|
|Rosana Hanif is a John Jay Honors Program junior, who is majoring in Law & Society and minoring in Anthropology. She is on the Dean’s List, a member of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and a Jewish Foundation for Education of Women Summer Scholar recipient. Recently, she has become a member of the Sigma Alpha Pi society and was awarded the National Engaged Leader Award. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Rosana was placed at Exalt Youth as a junior program coordinator, where she facilitates one-on-ones with students to encourage them to pursue their goals, helps request high school records for students who are requesting a high school transfer, and assists with class and internship placements. Eventually she plans to build her own cycle and act as their main program coordinator as these students go through the 6-week Pre-Internship training class, 8-week Internship Phase, 2-week Post Internship phase, and eventually graduation. After graduating from John Jay College, Rosana intends to pursue a master’s degree in Criminal Justice or Social Work, and to continue working with justice-involved youth.
|Stephannie Jaggon is a Pinkerton Community Fellow pursuing a Baccalaureate/Master’s degree in Criminal Justice. As a fellow, Stephannie serves at BronxConnect, a non-profit Alternative to Incarceration/ Alternative to Detention organization, dedicated to “Keep Urban Youths Out of Jail for Life” by serving youths and young adults, age 14-24, who are facing felony charges. Currently, Stephannie is placed in the ATI department as a Case Manager and is responsible for youth compliance monitoring, evaluating the needs of each youth, recommends and facilitates plans to meet the needs of each youth as well as providing personal support, and referring youths to appropriate resources to assist with meeting goals and moving forward in self-sufficiency. Stephannie conducts intake interviews with potential clients and acts as a Court Liaison by attending youth’s legal proceedings and advocates based on the youth’s involvement at BronxConnect. Stephannie also partakes in all youth program operations such as curfew checks, program activities and services.|
|Audris Jimenez is a Graduate student in the Forensic Psychology Master’s Program at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellows, Audris is placed at the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES), where she works with the Court Employment Project (CEP) utilizing a strengths-based approach to help youth ages 16-24 that are currently facing felony charges in the state of New York. In this role she employs evidence-based practices to administer mental health assessments, court intakes, mental health clinic referrals, and co-facilitate cognitive behavioral groups. Outside of the Pinkerton Fellowship, Audris works in Dr. Stone’s Memory lab, where she is conducting research for her thesis on child eyewitness testimony and gender bias in juror perception of those testimonies. In the future she hopes to apply to doctoral programs for clinical psychology, with an ultimate goal of serving minority youth and enacting community level changes for the youth and their families.|
|Alain Joseph is a sophomore at John Jay College, majoring in Law & Society with a minor in Africana studies. Born to Haitian parents, Alain is inspired by his father’s life in Africa and espouses a Pan-African perspective that strives to unite people of African descent and create institutions that will promote self-sufficiency in black communities. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Alain is placed at The Possibility Project, where he helps the young participants write scripts on topics that matter to them and speaks to wider social issues in minority communities, while collaborating with the director in bringing The Possibility Project’s mission to various community organizations. Alain is an aspiring writer and enjoys writing stories based on the realities of life across the world. Alain’s time at The Possibility Project has taught him how effective the arts can be in promoting youth advocacy.|
|Prakruti Koratagere is a second-year graduate student in the Forensic Mental Health Counselling program and an aspiring clinician. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, Prakruti is placed at EAC Network’s Queens TASC, a social service agency focused on empowering, assisting, and caring for people with behavioral and mental health needs who are involved in the justice system. The populace she serves consists of adolescents and youth ages 16-24 years old; most of whom are diagnosed with co-occurring severe mental illnesses and substance abuse issues. Prakruti conducts client intakes, psychosocial evaluations, clinical interviews; and facilitates intensive case management requiring family interventions and counselling sessions with her clients. She employs motivational interviewing techniques to encourage clients with their educational and career goals. Prakruti utilizes her background as a former crime and investigative reporter in India to learn and advance her knowledge in clinical competency in an entirely different cultural setting here in New York. Her long-term goals include obtaining NYS LMHC licensure and continuing being a social justice advocate in the mental health field.|
|Joseph Mahmud is a senior at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, where he is pursuing a Public Administration degree. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Joseph serves at The Legal Aid Society’s Adolescent Intervention and Diversion Project and its Employment Law Unit. Joseph provides resource and policy training to various organizations throughout New York City that serve justice-involved youth. He empowers clients with criminal records to find stable employment by helping them obtain legal documents that demonstrate rehabilitation as well as explain their criminal record and good conduct to prospective employers. Outside of The Legal Aid Society, Joseph is a financial literacy moderator for College Initiative and an administrator at John Jay College’s Department of Public Management. He is also a Ron Moelis Social Innovation Fellow, a Dean’s List student, and a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and the American Society for Public Administration. After graduation, Joseph intends to pursue a Master of Public Administration. His ultimate goal is to use policy reform to improve socio-economic conditions in low-income communities.|
|Marlen Martinez is a first-generation Mexican American student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She is currently a junior pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology, with a minor in Psychology. She is Dean’s List student and a member of the John Jay College Undergraduate Honor’s Program. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Marlen is placed at College Initiative (CI), an organization that is dedicated to help and empower justice involved individuals in their transition into college. At CI, Marlen works closely with academic counselors helping students with defaulted loans and academic appeals. She also works with CI students develop the student newsletter and creating weekly bulletins. At CI, Marlen facilities workshops and is a mentor at Brookwood Secure Center. In addition to the Pinkerton Fellowship, Marlen is an active student leader at John Jay College, serving as the Vice President of Youth Justice Club and as a Campus Activity Board Chair member. After graduation, Marlen plans to attend either graduate school or law school and continue advocate for individuals with criminal justice involvement|
|Phylicia McClendon is a graduate student in the Forensic Mental Health Counseling Master’s Program at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. As a current Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is placed at Getting Out and Staying Out (GOSO), a well-known non-profit youth justice organization focused on empowering young men ages 16-24 with previous criminal justice involvement through education, employment, financial independence and emotional well-being. Phylicia contributes to GOSO’s mission by providing direct clinical services and facilitating workshops in job readiness and educational advancement. In addition to this, Phylicia also conducts intake interviews and psychosocial assessments for new incoming participants as well as individual and group therapy sessions. She will also be continuing the Cultural Competency Series as part of her Legacy Project, and will be piloting a new workshop series focused on Mental Health and Wellness. Phylicia’s future plans include obtaining her NYS LMHC license and pursuing a PhD in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in Forensics.|
|Stephanie Miodus is a first-generation college student pursuing a master’s degree in Forensic Psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. As a Pinkerton Community Graduate Fellow, Stephanie is placed at Friends of Island Academy, where she works as a case manager providing individual counseling and additional services for fathers ages 18-24 participating in Friends 2 Fathers (F2F), a community-based fatherhood initiative for non-custodial fathers who reside or have a family court case in the Bronx. F2F provides a strength-based, comprehensive program to promote responsible fatherhood with an emphasis on a father’s commitment, support and engagement with their children. Outside of the fellowship, Stephanie is a research assistant in Dr. Maureen Allwood’s Child and Adolescent Stress and Trauma Lab. She is writing her thesis on the relationship between trauma exposure, ADHD, and PTSD. Stephanie intends to pursue a PhD and hopes to primarily focus her future research and clinical work on the school to prison pipeline for children with disabilities, specifically autism.|
|Sherin Siby is a senior at John Jay College majoring in Criminology and a certificate in Dispute Resolution. After graduation, she plans to attend Relay Graduate School of Education through the Teach For America program. As a Pinkerton Fellow, Sherin is placed at The Fortune Society, a nonprofit organization, whose mission is to support successful reentry from prison and promote alternatives to incarceration. At Fortune Society, Sherin assists and teaches The Young Adult Literacy Program (YALP), which consists of 17-24 year olds who have been in the justice system. Her daily responsibilities include conducting one-on-one sessions with students in the YALP class, developing curriculum for the YALP, and tutoring students. Her goal is to be a positive role model for the YALP students as well as to assist them in obtaining their Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) diplomas (f/k/a GED). She also wants to help YALP students develop emotionally and intellectually so that they can be successful in life.|
|Deandra Simon is a first generation college student at John Jay College pursuing a degree in English and a minor in Africana Studies. She is a Percy Ellis Sutton SEEK Student and a member of the Chi Alpha Epsilon National Honor Society. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Deandra is placed at Safe Space/Sheltering Arms, where she serves as a Life Coach and Resource to the Far Rockaway Community Youth Center. She primarily works with the Arches program. In addition to participating in the Pinkerton Fellowship, Deandra serves as a Learning Exchange Participant at the Prison-to-College Pipeline Program, which offers accredited undergraduate courses to correctional facilities in New York. Moreover, Deandra is Vice-President of the Haitian-American Student Association, an Urban Male Initiative Mentee, and mentors students as a Study Abroad Peer Advisor. After Graduation, Deandra plans on enrolling in Law School and want’s to be a public defender. Her life ambition is to become first African-American female United States’ Supreme Court Justice.|
|Janet Tang is a graduate student in the Forensic Mental Health Counseling program at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, Janet is currently placed at Services for the Underserved, a nonprofit organization providing a wide range of services. There, Janet works as a substance abuse counselor and meets on an individual basis with court-mandated youths. She also facilitates groups using evidence-based curriculums, such as anger management and cognitive-behavioral therapy, to promote recovery for her clients. Beyond those responsibilities, Janet performs psychosocial and other forms of assessments for her clients. Prior to the Pinkerton Fellowship, Janet has had experience working in a wide range of service settings, including agencies serving victims of crime and homeless shelters. She hopes to pursue the Victim Counseling track in her graduate program to be able to provide trauma-informed care for her future clients. Janet also hopes to eventually use her experiences in direct service to work in public policy with a focus on education, mental health, and criminal justice reform.|
|Tarisha Augustin is a senior majoring in Humanities and Justice with a minor in Law. She is a Pinkerton Community Fellow at The Osborne Association, where she works predominately with the Youth Action Council (YAC), a diverse group of youth ambassadors who raise awareness about the effects of parental incarceration through youth-led advocacy rooted in their personal experiences. The group also strives to help participants handle their parents’ incarceration and the labeling, stigma or shame they might face. In addition to leading workshops to help inform and shape the group’s advocacy efforts, Tarisha also encourages the youths to make positive lifestyle choices through individual Case Management Services. Outside of Osborne, Tarisha is an active student leader at John Jay College, serving as the President of the Haitian-American Student Association and as a Campus Activity Board Chair Member. Tarisha hopes to attend law school and serve juveniles as a defense attorney.|
|Vanessa Castro-Mora is a first-generation college student, pursuing a degree in Forensic Psychology with a minor in Human Services. She is a Dean’s List student and a member of the John Jay College Undergraduate Honor’s Program and Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Vanessa is placed with College Initiative (CI), an organization dedicated to creating pathways from criminal justice involvement to college. At CI, Vanessa works with potential and current college students who are Justice Scholars or affiliated with other agencies’ youth programs. As an Academic Counselor, Vanessa administers college readiness assessments and assists students with enrollment and financial aid issues. She also connects students with campus-based programs and CI mentors. Prior to the Pinkerton Fellowship, Vanessa served as a Peer Counselor at John Jay College and interned at the East Harlem Tutorial Program. After graduation she plans to pursue a Masters in Social Work with a concentration in Community Organizing in order to continue taking a holistic approach to working with youth and families who have criminal justice involvement.|
|Carmelo Cintron Jr. is a first generation college student currently in his senior year at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He is majoring in Economics with a concentration in Forensic Financial Analyst. He is a Dean’s List student and a member of the Men’s Volleyball team. Carmelo is now a Pinkerton Community Fellow. He is currently placed at Advocates for Children, where he works directly with lawyers who provide advocacy services and legal representation to court-involved youth facing educational obstacles. He assists lawyers with client intake, legal research, and representing students at suspension and impartial hearings. He also assists with requesting evaluations for special education services and coordinating school visits for youth and families. Carmelo was drawn to this field when he started witnessing the social injustices that youth today face. In addition to working at Advocates for Children, Carmelo remains active as a volunteer assistant volleyball coach where he enjoys teaching the fundamentals of volleyball. After graduation, Carmelo plans to pursue a law degree and hopes to become a federal prosecutor.|
|Emely Dickens is a junior at John Jay College and aspires to become a criminal defense attorney. She is majoring in Political Science and minoring in Public Administration. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Emely works with Safe Space and its partner organization, Sheltering Arms. Emely mentors young people ages 13-24 at the youth development center. She also works closely with young men ages 16-24 in the NYC Department of Probation program Arches. Arches helps participants transform their attitudes and build skills to avoid future criminal justice involvement. Emely facilitates workshops and teambuilding exercises, leads trips and recreational activities, and supports her mentees through self-reflection exercises on a daily basis. Coupled with her coursework at John Jay, Emely’s Pinkerton placement offers her insight into the world that she someday hopes to change for the better.|
|Jahvar Duffus is a senior majoring in Criminal Justice. After witnessing disparities in incarceration and other injustices within the criminal justice system in his youth, Jahvar chose this field of study to better understand the operations and inner workings of the system As a Pinkerton Fellow he is placed at the Children’s Aid Society PEAK Program, a school-based alternative-to-incarceration program that works with court-involved youth by assisting them in developing various skills necessary to prosper in their endeavors. As a member of John Jay College’s Urban Male Initiative (UMI), he participates in and facilitates discussions relevant to structural societal issues. In the future Jahvar plans to become a lawyer—to be a voice for those without and to correct issues in society that are fundamentally wrong.|
|Betsy E. Galicia is a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow working on a Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology. She is currently placed at The Bronx Defenders, a holistic, client-centered public defense office and social service provider. Betsy works in the Adolescent Defense Project, supporting and advocating for adolescents who are tried in adult court. She is also creating a “Parent Handbook” in English and Spanish and starting a “Parent Support Group;” both will serve as resources for parents who have adolescents in the criminal justice system. Outside of her externship commitments, Betsy works in Dr. Zapf and Dr. Weiss’ laboratory, where she conducts research on cultural differences and has presented in national research conferences, such as the American Psychological Association and Association for Psychological Science conferences. She is writing her thesis on ataque de nervios (attacks of nerves), a cultural syndrome found among individuals of Hispanic origin. She is considering applying to a doctoral program for clinical psychology or applying to law school to become an immigration attorney. Her ultimate goal is to work with minorities in the criminal justice system.|
|Dave Gentile is a Criminal Justice Management major and current Pinkerton Community Fellow at Community Connections for Youth (CCFY) in the South Bronx. CCFY strives to develop community-based alternative-to-incarceration programs for youth. Dave is currently conducting research and data analysis for a CCFY proposal to implement restorative justice programs in New York City public schools. Restorative Justice involves addressing problems as they arise within the schools themselves, and seeking to avoid involving the police. He contributes to a wide range of other projects, from planning events to tracking attendance and editing publications. Born in Little Rock, Arkansas, Dave grew up mainly in New York City. His passion for social justice stems from the trials and tribulations experienced by his birth family, but it was truly ignited following the birth of his daughter, Avery Rose. After graduating he aspires to continue working to improve the justice system.|
|Kathleen Gomes is a senior majoring in Forensic Psychology and minoring in Human Services. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, she works with the Center for Court Innovation’s Harlem Youth Court, a restorative justice program that promotes personal responsibility, community restoration, and youth leadership. Kathleen’s responsibilities include conducting intakes with respondents, assisting with summer training sessions for prospective members, and overseeing the day-to-day operations of the youth court. Kathleen also works with staff to develop and deliver workshops on decision making and conflict resolution for youth court members and respondents. In addition to participating in the Pinkerton Fellowship, Kathleen is a Dean’s List student and a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. After graduation, Kathleen intends to pursue a Master of Social Work and a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology and to continue working with court-involved youth.|
|Nyesha Jackson is majoring in Forensic Psychology and minoring in Human Services. She is a Dean’s List recipient as well as a peer counselor at John Jay College. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Nyesha is placed with the New York Public Library as a member of the Correctional Services team. She provides direct service by making weekly visits to Rikers Island to facilitate book club discussions and to assist with book circulation. Nyesha also contributes to the “Daddy & Me” book-recording project, which allows incarcerated parents to participate in early literacy workshops and to record stories for their children. She is conducting research on justice-involved youth to share with teen specialist librarians across the library and helping to create a user-friendly web version of Connections, NYPL’s reentry guidebook. Nyesha plans to pursue a Master of Social Work and to continue working with justice-involved youth and adults.|
|Dylan Johnson is in her second year of pursuing a master’s degree in Forensic Psychology. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Seattle University, majoring in psychology and criminal justice. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, Dylan is placed at the Staten Island Youth Justice Center (SIYJC), a branch of the Center for Court Innovation. At SIYJC, Dylan works primarily with youth who have been released from non-secure placement facilities and are re-entering the community. Using a positive youth development model, Dylan works with the youth to establish short-term and long-term goals, positive coping strategies, and behavior modification. She also aids in helping youth engage in pro-social activities. Previously Dylan worked as a corrections officer at a county jail in Washington State, as an advocate for children in foster care, and as a reentry coordinator at Rikers Island. Upon graduating, Dylan hopes to further her education degree and continue working with court-involved youth.|
|Sanjida Afrin Meem is a BA/MA student pursuing a major in Forensic Psychology with a minor in Criminology. Sanjida is a Pinkerton Community Fellow at Friends of Island Academy, where she works with the Jail-to-School Pipeline Project. Her role consists of visiting and identifying eligible juveniles from Rikers Island, Horizon Juvenile Facility and Crossroads Secure Detention Facility to participate in the Pipeline Project. She helps prepare youth for successful reentry in order to increase educational enrollments among 16 to 18 year olds leaving custody. In addition, Sanjida coordinates youth and family engagement activities and serves as a motivator for young adults. Prior to the Pinkerton Fellowship, she founded the Women’s Empowerment Society, worked as a research assistant for the Center on Terrorism, participated in the NYS Prison-to-College Pipeline and interned at Sakhi for South Asian Women. Sanjida is a Ronald E. McNair Scholar, a recipient of the Service to Women Recognition Award and a member of Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society and Psi Chi International Honor Society. After graduating, she plans to pursue a PhD and focus on reentry education.|
|Riddhi H. Mehta is an international graduate student from Mumbai, India. She is currently in her second year of pursuing a Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology. She was a merit list student throughout her high school years and an Honors student while completing her undergraduate major in Psychology. She topped her college in Psychology during the final board exams at Mithibai College of Arts in Mumbai. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she is currently working at CASES (Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services), specifically with the Manhattan LINK Program, which caters to the needs of individuals with mental illness and a history of incarceration. She provides case management and social work services to such clients. She also makes regular visits to Rikers to conduct intake interviews of newly referred clients. She is involved with linking the clients to housing, entitlements, therapy and treatment services based on their needs and requirements. In addition to serving as a Pinkerton Fellow, Riddhi is also a professional dancer and choreographer, certified Mental Health First Aid Provider and Hypnosis Master.|
|Erica Murphy is a John Jay College of Criminal Justice graduate student currently pursuing her master’s degree in Forensic Mental Health Counseling. As a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow, she works at Getting Out and Staying Out (GOSO), a leading youth justice organization focused on supporting young men (ages 16-24) who have histories of criminal justice involvement. Erica contributes to this goal by assisting her clients with job preparedness and education advancement. She actively participates in the organization’s collaborative atmosphere by providing intensive case management and clinical services to GOSO’s youth. Erica can often be found conducting new client intakes, psychosocial assessments, and individual psychotherapy sessions, in addition to facilitating group curriculum workshops. Overall, Erica strives to align with the team-oriented atmosphere of positively and therapeutically engaging GOSO’s young clients. Erica’s future plans include obtaining her LMHC license and continuing her work in the social justice sphere. Her specific interests include juvenile justice reforms, alternative to incarceration initiatives, and youth mentorship programs (with a focus on college preparedness).|
|Anissa Robinson is a senior majoring
in Criminal Justice and minoring in Sociology. She aspires to become a homicide detective in the NYPD and a lawyer. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Anissa is placed at the Center for Community Alternatives (CCA) in Brooklyn. CCA is a not-for-profit organization that works with justice-involved youth and is a leader in the field of community-based alternatives to incarceration. Anissa works with teenagers in CCA’s “Choices Unlimited” alternative-to-detention programs as an after-school activities specialist. She conducts intakes with new participants, plans trips and activities for the youth, monitors curfew logs, and coordinates events. While working at the Center for Community Alternatives, Anissa desires to improve her understanding of justice-involved youth. She hopes to utilize her knowledge and experience when interacting with youth as a police officer in the future.
|Claire Tabuteau is a rising junior double majoring in English and Political Science and minoring in writing. As an undocumented immigrant, she became affiliated with The Door, a non-profit organization, which not only helped her obtain legal residency in the United States but also furthered her career interest in working with court-involved youth. She has given back to the community by volunteering at The Door. As a Pinkerton Fellow placed at the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES), she continues to give back and explore her passion for working with justice-involved youth. At CASES, she works with the Intellectual and Career Development Unit, which focuses on helping individuals aged 16-24 enroll in college, pursue vocational training and find employment. In addition to working directly with participants, Ms. Tabuteau is creating a resource book to provide information about job training, education and employment programs to CASES participants. Ms. Tabuteau hopes to work as a court representative for court-involved youth in the future, combining her experience in working at CASES with her knowledge of the legal system to better serve these youths.|
|Antonella Uribe is a Pinkerton Graduate Community Fellow placed with Good Shepherd Services’ non-secure placement programs in Brooklyn, working with at-risk youth at the Barbara Blum and Rose House residences. She works with youth, families, and staff members to assist youth in developing safety and behavior self-management plans that are effective and consistent with Missouri group treatment and Sanctuary. Antonella works with staff to provide them with insight and tools to support the youths’ use of such plans, and she similarly collaborates with the youths’ family or permanency resource. She also works to ensure the program adheres to a positive youth development culture. Antonella is in her second year of the MA Forensic Psychology program. She is also a member of Delta Epsilon Iota Honors Society, Psi Chi International Honors society in psychology, and the Latin American Student Organization at John Jay. Previously she worked as a breakthrough partner under the supervision of behavioral therapists for children with autism. Antonella joined the Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative to further explore her interest in youth justice. She looks forward to positively impacting the lives of her clients at Good Shepherd Services, as well as helping improve their family relationships.|
|Jose Vazquez is a Pinkerton Community Fellow and Senior at John Jay College of Criminal Justice where he is pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice Bachelor of Science with a minor in Dispute Resolution. He also attended Nyack Christian College, where he graduated magna cum laude with an associate’s degree in General Education. Jose is also a member of the Alpha Phi Sigma Criminal Justice Honor Society and is further developing his interest in education and youth justice. As a Pinkerton Community Fellow with Children’s Aid Society’s Next Generation Center Jose works as a Youth Coach. Youth Coaches are trained in Motivational Interviewing and the Stages of Change model. A Youth Coach's primary responsibility is to build transformational relationships with young people to support and engage them through a process of change and growth. Jose’s desire and determination to help underprivileged youth from low-income families stems from his own experience with growing up in an impoverished and underprivileged community. He aspires to establish a mentoring program for undeserved youth.|
|Marilyn Alvarado is a first generation college student pursuing a degree in Forensic Psychology with a double minor in Counseling and Latin American Studies. She developed an interest in working with justice-involved youth after witnessing her own family and friends experience hardships in the criminal justice system. She has given back to the community by volunteering with John Jay College’s Office of Community Outreach and for YANA (You Are Never Alone) during Hurricane Sandy. As a Pinkerton Fellow with Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES), she worked with the Intellectual and Career Development Unit. She researched and assisted the youth in applying to various college, employment, and vocational opportunities. She collaborated with a colleague and taught a Social Justice curriculum to youth. Marilyn worked with the first CITE Program (Coney Island Training and Education) that CASES developed. She worked with a group of youth on developing their resumes, preparing for the TASC (former GED) Exam, as well as helping them develop and create their Community Benefit Project Mural; which they presented during a Coney Island Alliance meeting. Marilyn aspires to work in the juvenile justice system in the future, combining her knowledge of the legal system with her understanding of the social service needs of youth in high risk neighborhoods.|
|Meherun Begum was a Pinkerton Community Fellow while Undergraduate Peer Mentor as a senior at John Jay College, majoring in Legal Studies and minoring in English. Meherun was a recipient of the Certificate of Honors in recognition of excellent scholastic standing. She previously volunteered as a Peer Ambassador and a Community Outreach Representative, for which she completed over 300 hours of community service and earned a Certificate of Recognition for organizing a conference on human trafficking. As a Pinkerton Fellow, Meherun served at CASES (Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services) Justice Scholars, where she was an integral part of the participants’ success. She actively assisted with recruiting and enrolling eligible youths in the Justice Scholars program, and she contributed to clients’ case management, particularly in developing aftercare goals. Meherun also helped run the Justice Scholars service-learning projects, which serve as a mechanism for building cohesion among participants, as well as introducing them to volunteerism and civic engagement. In addition to working directly with participants, Meherun conducted research to provide information and referrals to outside programs for participants upon completion of the program.|
|Sharonne Benson is a senior majoring in Forensic Psychology and minoring in Human Services. As a Pinkerton Fellow, she worked with the Children’s Aid Society’s PEAK Program (Pathways to Excellence, Achievement and Knowledge), a school-based alternative-to-incarceration program. Sharonne organized and supervised field trips designed to supplement the participants’ educational enrichment. She also developed career readiness workshops and worked closely with the PEAK team on collecting and managing data to track the program’s and participants’ progress. Outside of her PFI commitments, Sharonne is a member of the Chi Alpha Epsilon Honor Society and a Peer Counselor at John Jay College. She previously interned at the Prisoner Reentry Institute (PRI), providing administrative support and heading PRI’s prison mail program. After completing her undergraduate degree, Sharonne plans to obtain her MA and PhD in hopes of becoming a counseling psychologist.|
|Melissa Deowdhat is on a BS/MA track, majoring in Criminal Justice with a specialty in Counter-Terrorism and Investigative Techniques. She is a Dean’s List student, a member of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and a political activist, having previously campaigned for former NYC mayoral candidate Bill Thompson. Melissa was a Pinkerton Community Fellow with the Osborne Association, where she worked with the Children and Youth Services Department. With the Children and Youth Services, Melissa worked with children who had incarcerated parents, helping them cope with the stigma and shame they may face in their lives. Melissa helped design and facilitate workshops to empower the youth and give them necessary life skills that will help them succeed in life. Melissa plans on completing her Master’s Degree and hopes to focus on prisoner reentry and reform the criminal justice system in the future.|
|Thomas Leonardi is a BS/MA student majoring in Criminal Justice with a specialization in Criminology and Deviance and minoring in Psychology. As a Pinkerton Fellow he worked with The Horticultural Society of New York (“The Hort”), where he helped facilitate two programs: GreenHouse and GreenTeam. At the GreenHouse program, Thomas worked alongside incarcerated individuals on Rikers Island, creating and maintaining gardens. The program aims to give participants a therapeutic outlet through horticulture while learning marketable job skills and improving soft skills such as teamwork and communication abilities. GreenTeam provides vocational training and transitional employment for GreenHouse members who have completed the program and left Rikers. GreenTeam participants complete projects such as installing green roofs and landscaping NYC parks. Through the course of his fellowship, Thomas worked to evaluate, develop, and expand these programs and implement the changes to improve their efficacy.|
|Christine Li was a Pinkerton Community Fellow placed with Good Shepherd Services’ non-secure placement programs in Brooklyn. She worked with at-risk youth at the Barbara Blum and Shirley Chisholm residences. Her responsibilities included scheduling and planning activities for residents, in addition to mentoring youths and supporting staff members. Christine is double majoring in Criminal Justice and English. She is also active in the Honors Program, the Phi Eta Sigma Honors Society, and the Habitat for Humanity club. Previously she worked as an after-school teacher for elementary school children and interned as a legal assistant at the Kings County District Attorney’s Office. Christine joined the Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative to further explore her interest in youth justice. She enjoyed improving her mentoring skills throughout the Fellowship and positively impacting the lives of her clients at Good Shepherd Services.|
|Lisa Mahadeo was a Pinkerton Community Fellow at Safe Space NYC, where she worked with both ARCHES, a six-month mentoring program for youth referred by their probation officers, and The Space, a youth development center for 13- to 24-year-olds seeking enriching experiences. As a mentor, she conducted and participated in team building exercises, led trips and recreational activities, guided participants in self-reflective writing assignments, and assisted youths seeking employment. The Space offers structured activities such as Youth Empowerment Workshops, Life Skills, “Girl Talks,” and movie nights. Case Management Services and Clinical Services are conducted in The Space. Run Away Youth Services referrals are given as well as referrals to shelters, food pantries, and laundry facilities. Lisa is a first generation college student majoring in Forensic Psychology with a minor in Public Administration. She is also a Peer Ambassador, NUFP Fellow, UMI Peer Advocate, Chi Alpha Epsilon Historian, and the President of SEEK Society. Her main academic and professional interest is the intersection of juvenile delinquency and higher education.|
|Banapsha Rahman is majoring in Political Science and minoring in Human Rights. She is a Dean’s List student as well as a member of the Honor’s Program and the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society. As a woman of East Asian descent, her cultural experiences have helped shape her interest in women’s rights. She hopes to pursue a career in promoting education for underprivileged women. Banapsha was placed at exalt youth as a junior program coordinator through the Pinkerton Community Fellowship. She assisted with the intake and professional development of the youth involved in the program. Her responsibilities also included collecting data and following up with graduates to help develop year-end reports. She worked hard during the fellowship to be a positive role model for the students and encourage them to pursue their goals.|
|Amalaky Ramdan was a Pinkerton Community Fellow placed at Exodus Transitional Community, where she assisted the Development and Data Manager in researching progressive criminal justice legislation proposals, possible funding opportunities, and reentry news stories. She also wrote articles and took photographs for the agency’s newsletter and contributed content to the agency’s social media presence. Amalaky provided direct service by conducting intake assessments, providing technical support in the computer lab, and assisting participants with their resumes. Prior to the Pinkerton Fellowship, Amalaky interned at The Doe Fund, where she shadowed case managers and assisted with file management. Amalaky is a Dean’s List student pursuing a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Psychology. After graduation she plans to pursue an MA in Clinical Social Work, and she aspires to use her diverse range of knowledge and experience to work with youths involved in the juvenile justice system and substance abuse clinics.|
|Connie Velasquez majored in Criminal Justice, while also earning a certificate in Legal Translation and Interpretation in Spanish. Previously Connie was an executive member of the Honors Student Advisory Committee (HSAC) and a member of La Guardia Community College’s Friends of Koch Program, a group devoted to researching and creating a documentary about Edward Koch’s mayoral administration. Connie was a Pinkerton Community Fellow with Friends of Island Academy, where she served as a Youth Advocate. Connie devoted her time and energy predominately to the Jail-to-School Pipeline, a program to help students at Rikers Island connect with resources in their communities upon their release. Connie’s direct service included meeting youths at Rikers Island and Crossroads Secure Detention Facility, tutoring students, organizing and participating in “family meal” nights, and coordinating outings and extracurricular activities for youths and their families. In the future Connie hopes to become a probation officer because she believes incarceration is not the best method to prevent youth from engaging in criminal activities.|
|Jasleen Villamil was a Pinkerton Community Fellow with Bronx Community Solutions (BCS), a project of the Center for Court Innovation. She focused predominately on conducting intake interviews for the BCS Adolescent Diversion Program (ADP), which offers alternative sanctions for 16- and 17-year-olds arrested for misdemeanors. In addition to doing intakes, Jasleen scheduled client appointments and assisted with maintaining the ADP database. She also facilitated youth programming, assisted in creating new youth development activities, and researched strategies to improve youth engagement. As a student majoring in Humanities and Justice Studies, Jasleen is committed to understanding how the concept of justice is applied in different communities. Jasleen’s prior community outreach experience includes serving as a Peer Educator at the LGBT Community Center, volunteering with the AmeriCorps Juvenile Justice Corps at John Jay, and shadowing attorneys at Bronx Defenders, where she developed a passion for holistic defense. In the future Jasleen aims to become a lawyer working for the public interest with family, youth, or incarcerated women.|
|Spencer Washington is a student in the John Jay College Honors Program, majoring in Public Administration and minoring in Music Composition. As a Pinkerton Fellow, Spencer was placed at Advocates for Children (AFC), where he worked directly with school-aged children who had their educational rights violated in the New York City school system. Spencer assisted the AFC lawyers and social workers to guarantee that the youth are compensated educationally according to settlements won in lawsuits and suspension hearings. In addition to serving at Advocates for Children, Spencer remained active in the John Jay community as an Urban Male Initiative Peer Mentor, a Prison-to-College Pipeline Learning Exchange participant, an usher at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater, and a songwriter in the Artists United Club. After graduating, Spencer hopes to work with justice-involved youth in New York to provide alternative forms of education through art and music to build their confidence creatively.|
|Alexandra Avila was a Community Fellow with the Children’s Aid Society. She majored in Criminal Justice and minored in Criminology, while also pursuing a Certificate in Dispute Resolution. She joined the Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative in order to expand her interests in the juvenile justice system and to explore prospective career opportunities. At Children’s Aid Society, Alexandra worked with the ECHOES (Every Child Has the Opportunity to Excel and Succeed) WORKLINC Program – an Alternative to Incarceration & Work-Readiness Program operated by CAS and the NYC Department of Probation. Alexandra assisted in guiding a group of system-involved youths as they volunteer at food banks, community gardens, and schools. Alexandra also ran the Intermediate Stage of the ECHOES WORKLINC Program, where she taught participants job skills, conducted mock interviews, and helped participants complete job applications and improve their professionalism. In addition to her direct service, Alexandra helped manage budgets and coordinate events. At John Jay, Alexandra worked as a Peer Mentor for the Office of Student Academic Success Programs to help incoming freshman adjust to college.|
|Salahdine Baroudi majored in Humanities and Justice Studies with a double minor in English and Philosophy. A Dean’s List student, Salahdine was a member of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honors Society and a recipient of many awards, including Policy Debate speaker awards, the Upper Division Scholarship, and the Percy Ellis Sutton SEEK Department Certificate of Honors. Salahdine was also a Ronald H. Brown Fellow, a Peer Ambassador, and a member of John Jay’s Student Council—most recently winning election as the Council’s Executive Vice President. Salahdine is particularly interested in protecting the legal rights of underprivileged minorities, an area he has explored through a judicial internship at the Queens County Criminal Court and through a legal internship at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Human Trafficking Bureau. After graduation, Salahdine plans to attend law school and eventually become a public interest or civil rights lawyer. As a Fellow he worked with the Center for Court Innovation.|
|Kerry-Ann Clarke majored in Forensic Psychology; she is the first person in her family to attend college. Throughout her adolescence she faced much adversity, but the experiences strengthened her character and her resolve to give back to the community. She has volunteered throughout Brooklyn in numerous capacities—from encouraging voter registration to painting schools to assisting individuals with legal matters. She aspires to continue her education in Psychology and to attain a doctorate degree. Kerry-Ann worked as a fellow with the Children’s Aid Society’s LINC Program.|
|Benedicta Darteh was a student in the Honors Program, pursuing a major in International Criminal Justice and a minor in Political Science. She was also a Junior Representative for John Jay’s student government. Benedicta attended Aburi Girls Senior High in Ghana, West Africa, where she was a Resident Assistant in her dormitory and the Secretary of the Scripture Union. After completing high school, she travelled to the United States to pursue her dream of becoming an attorney. Benedicta was the recipient of a Thurgood Marshall Scholarship and a John Marshall Law School Scholarship. She applied for the Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative to further explore her interest in the legal field, which was deepened while interning at the Bronx County Supreme Court. Benedicta was placed with Good Shepherd Services in Brooklyn, where she served as a Legal Specialist, managing the legal records of youth clients.|
|Cristina Enriquez was a Community Fellow with CASES, the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Education Services. Cristina majored in Criminal Justice with a double minor in Corrections and Psychology. Previously she was a member of the Accelerated Study in Associate Program (ASAP) at Queensborough Community College (QCC). She was also one of the four ASAP students at QCC selected for the ASAP Student Leadership Program. With her team members, Cristina coordinated a leadership event called “Break the Cycle,” which educated attendees about the growing epidemic of domestic violence. In the course of coordinating the event, Cristina and her team members also collected signatures for the school’s White Ribbon Campaign and did fundraising for the Women and Work Program.|
|Tenisha Morrison majored in Humanities and Justice with a minor in Africana Studies. Through her studies and her background as a South Bronx native, she developed a passion for community-based justice issues, such as advocating for alternative sentencing for youth and understanding the harms of the prison industrial complex. Previously, Tenisha worked at the New York Law Department as an aide to the Director of Recruitment. She has also assisted the Bronx District Attorney’s Office with matters relating to youth advocacy programs. Tenisha was a recipient of the Shawn Carter Foundation Scholarship. She contributes in her community by tutoring high school students, particularly preparing them for the NYS Regents Exams. Tenisha plans to venture into a career in youth justice upon graduation, which she explored as a fellow through her placement at the Correctional Association of New York.|
|Milton Pelotte was born and raised in Harlem, New York. He attended Information Technology High School in Long Island City, where he developed an interest in law. Milton was Community Fellow with Doing Art Together, a Dean’s List student and the recipient of a Thurgood Marshall Scholarship and the 2014 John Jay Alumni Endowed Scholarship. Milton also worked closely with John Jay Upward Bound, a program that helps low-income high school students obtain post-secondary education. Milton attributes his dedication to social justice partly to his own family members’ struggles with addiction and imprisonment. He has also studied in the Dominican Republic, which broadened his perspective and his appreciation for different cultures. After graduation, Milton plans to obtain a law degree and to create a non-profit organization to help youth from low-income families find mentors.|
|Jalisse Smith majored in Forensic Psychology with an interest in the field of Juvenile Delinquency. She was also a Universal Image Dancer and an E-Board Member. Jalisse recognizes the importance of being a well-rounded and civically minded individual and has been an active leader in her local church. In addition, she interns weekly at the Community Board 4 Manhattan as a Housing & Community Problem Solving Advocate. Understanding the importance of fostering community and service, she hopes to be a positive role model for younger generations and she wants to improve the lives of young people in high-risk neighborhoods in New York City. As a Community Fellow, Jalisse worked with Friends of Island Academy.|
|Rondayah Williams majored in English. She was an Honors Program student and an active member of the Chi Alpha Epsilon National Honor Society. Rondayah consistently makes the Dean’s List, she is a recipient of the New York City Merit Scholarship, and she was a Ronald H. Brown Fellow. For her Fellowship, Rondayah was placed with Community Connections for Youth. She is determined to go to law school and has previously won an award at John Jay’s Pre-Law Boot Camp for having one of the best personal statements. After completing a law degree, Rondayah hopes to work with adopted children and family-oriented organizations to help improve the criminal justice system.|
|Nicole Marie Alexander was a Pinkerton Community Fellow majoring in “Social Problems” through the CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies program. She is a graduate of the inaugural class of the New York Needs You fellowship and a recipient of the Thomas W. Smith Academic fellowship. She was also a Ronald E. McNair scholar and her research was entitled “Getting Older and Starting Over: the Struggles Elderly Ex-offenders Face Reentering Post-Recession America.” As a Pinkerton Community Fellow, Nicole worked at the Center for Court Innovation: Harlem Youth Court where she served as a facilitator for the new class of youth court trainees and led workshops for the youth court participants.|
|Dominique Andalcio was a student in the B.A. program in Criminal Justice at John Jay College. Dominique is interested in working with the incarcerated and formerly incarcerated populations. In the past, Dominique partnered with the Innocence Project to create awareness about wrongful incarceration using various forms of visual media. Dominique was placed during the fellowship at the Osborne Association’s Fatherhood Initiative. Dominique looks forward to continuing her education in criminal justice after she graduates in May of 2013.|
|John Bae was a Pinkerton Community Fellow placed with the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES) while a BA/MA student majoring in Criminal Justice. At CASES, he worked with the college transition program, providing academic support and mentoring to the students. Previously, he participated in the NYS Prison-to-College Pipeline as part of the initial cohort of students from John Jay College selected to attend classes in a correctional facility, and as a mentor for students with the College Initiative. He plans to go to law school and upon completing his degree, hopes to work with community-based organizations bringing about reform to the education and criminal justice systems.|
|Janer Cordero was a Pinkerton Community Fellow placed at the Center for Court Innovations: Bronx Community Solutions (BCS). Janer worked with staff to support the administrative viability and daily operations management of the Adolescent Diversion Program (ADP), assisting with tracking and evaluation of ADP data, and administering direct services by conducting ADP intakes (interviews) along with the intakes of the BCS general population. Prior to the Pinkerton Fellowship, Janer was a Fiscal and Administrative Assistant for the Prisoner Reentry Institute, and a volunteer for the Prison to College Pipeline program at Otisville Correctional Facility. Currently, she is a member of John Jay’s Student Election Review Committee. Janer will graduate with a BS in Legal Studies, and a minor in Public Administration. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a graduate level educational program in areas that are related to psychology and criminal justice.|
|Alex Griffith was a Pinkerton Community Fellow majoring in English and pursuing a minor in Public Administration at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Prior to becoming a Community Fellow, Alex worked as a research assistant and mentor at the Urban Male Initiative at John Jay College providing personal, academic, and professional support to program participants. He is currently a member of the Dean’s List, and also a recipient of the College Educational Milestone and Thurgood Marshall Scholarships. Alex was placed at exalt youth as a Program Coordinator where he worked directly with court-involved youth, ages 15-19, to support and enhance their employability and professionalism.|
|Sarah Guillet was a John Jay College Honor’s Program student enrolled in the CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies program, where she pursued her dual-concentration major, International Human Rights and Cultural Anthropology. Sarah was an executive member of the Amnesty International Student Chapter at John Jay and is an active member of the Phi Eta Sigma Honors Society. She is a recipient of the Thomas W. Smith Academic Fellowship and the Harriet Brows Scholarship for Social Change from CUNY BA. As a Pinkerton fellow, Sarah was placed with the Lasting Investments in Neighborhood Connections (LINC) of the Children Aid Society, where she co-led a work crew of youth during the LINC summer program. She also developed a small group of LINC youth who formed and implemented advocacy projects based on their issues and interests.|
|Mehdi Mahraoui was a first-generation, Moroccan student majoring in Public Administration at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He was a Pinkerton Community Fellow, an Undergraduate Peer-counselor, a member of the PHI ETA SIGMA National Honor Society, recipient of the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship, and a BA/MA student. Mehdi was placed at the Osborne Association where he assisted in coordinating programs for children with an incarcerated parent in hopes of transforming lives, communities, and the criminal justice system.|
|Sabrina Pestel was a Pinkerton Community Fellow and majoring in Economics at John Jay College. She previously obtained an Associate of Law Studies in the French West Indies. Sabrina’s concern with increasing ecological awareness won her the first place prize of the John Jay Earth Day Essay Contest. Her proposed plan to educate children about preventing water waste gave way to the consideration of creating a program called John Jay Green Ambassador. Placed at the Osborne Association, Sabrina actively participated in the development of their youth programs which provide support and services to children with a currently or formerly incarcerated parent or caregiver.|