MEXICAN AMERICAN PROFESSIONAL HALL OF FAME

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Sandra Calles, PhD

Dr. Sandra Calles is a psychologist, educator, life coach, mentor and activist. Her passion is to advocate for causes she believes in, teach about mental health topics, and guide others, so they may achieve success in their personal and career endeavors.

She has over 11 years of experience as a mental health professional having worked at various mental health facilities. Most recently she was a therapist at Los Angeles Harbor College at the Life Skills Center. While at Harbor College, she helped many students overcome emotional obstacles so they could transfer to universities and meet their career goals. She devotes her personal and professional life to political causes, and activities that promote mental health, women’s issues, the empowerment of Latinas through education, business ownership, financial literacy and political engagement. Dr. Sandra is a graduate of California State University, Dominguez Hills, earning both a BA in Human Services and an MA in Clinical Psychology. She earned her doctorate from Saybrook University in Psychology, where she developed a treatment modality from her research on survivors of sudden cardiac death. The treatment plan known as PROSPER, is an acronym detailing a healing plan that can be applied to survivors of various traumas and is the underpinning for the work she does with her clients..... Continue Reading

Latino Persistence in Education: Finding a Balance

The number of Latinos in higher education is increasing. However, Latinos are the least educated ethnic group in terms of bachelor’s degree completion with only 16 percent attaining a bachelor’s degree or higher.
According to Dr. Linda Castillo’s research, part of the problem may stem from intragroup marginalization. In other words, being teased by family members for not being Latino enough can impact a student’s motivation to continue in college.
Dr. Castillo, professor of counseling psychology, and her research team knew the importance of addressing this because of their own experiences in the education pipeline. Dr. Castillo had many instances where she was treated differently by white students and faculty for being Latino, but it was not until she was in college that she noticed her family’s views start to change. They treated her differently because of the way she spoke and for not being Latino enough…
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