The Liberal Arts Ambassadors

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Current Ambassadors

2016 Kailie Grinder      
2017 Rebekah Catron Danielle Costa    
2018 Brittany Bland-Boyd Kasey Iverson Kimberly Leyva Sherry Luo
  Emily McBride      


Ambassador Alumni

Amy Armento Steven Auclair Tanya Ayala Joseph Bagdanov
Elizabeth Barrios Leslie Bazan Benjamin Bisson Stefanie Burgess
Anthony Campbell Breanna Celaya Lanice Cooper Sabrina Dangc
Emalie Diaz Jane Dietrich Andrew Elia Jennie Estrada
Stephanie Farnum Ema Irene Gonzalez Jennifer Griffith Rachel Harril
Kristiana Hatcher Fatima Jawad Evelyn Martin Brandi Nakamoto
Rachel Harril Kristiana Hatcher Fatima Jawad Evelyn Martin
Brandi Nakamoto Sally Pineda Toni Ramirez Danica Rosendale
Leah Sadoian Melissa Sanchez Talia Sheets Bradlee Trude Smith
Leah Smith Gerardo Soria Ellee Stewart Teri Tan
Dallas Thueringer Andy Wood Lillian Yamase  


Current Ambassadors


Brittany Bland-Boyd '18

Chemistry Major-Pre-Medicine, Spanish Minor
Union City, CA

I have lived my whole in the Bay Area where it is extremely diverse and rich with a variety of cultures. Race and diversity plays a huge part in my life because I am Black. I love being Black. Yes there are challenges that come naturally with being black. However that is what makes black people so strong. We have overcame so much and still to this day we are continuing to overcome racism, discrimination and prejudice. I want to dedicate part of my life to helping people who encounter these. I love talking about race and also understanding different ideologies.

I do not only have a passion for civil rights, but I also am interested in dermatology. I have dealt with skin problems for years now. I would love to have my own skin care line in the future. I chose to study chemistry because I fell in love with it in high school. Chemistry is seriously life. Everything around us revolves around chemistry. I will be able to use chemistry to help people with skin problems.

I love learning how chemistry is in the simplest things, such as baking. Another one of my passions is baking. My mother really got into cake decorating and baking. I learned so much from her while I used to help her. Cake decorating brings me so much joy. It is truly an art form. The piping bag full of frosting is my paintbrush and the cake is my canvas. When I decorate cakes it allows time for me to be creative. I want to have a bakery of my own one day. It's a dream of mine to incorporate baking into helping people. Whether that is promoting social justice or ending world hunger one cupcake at a time.

I am minoring in Spanish because I just adore the language so much. I love speaking Spanish so much. I am really dedicated to learning to speak the language fluently. I can't wait to study abroad to Spain, so that I can practice my love for the language. Luckily there are so many Spanish speakers in California, which enable me to communicate with them.


In what ever I do, I want to make sure I am helping people. During the college application process I received a lot of help from my mother. She went to San Jose State University full-time, worked full-time and raised my brother, sister and I. She is truly my inspiration. I know that if she can receive her Bachelor's of Science with all the obstacles she encounter, I know that I can accomplish anything. I chose Westmont because it was a Christian school, they give a lot of financial aid, it wasn't too far from home, it was near a beach, it has rigorous academics and the campus life is amazing. But most of all I just felt so welcomed. I felt like I could really find my place here. And I have.

Rebekah Catron

Rebekah Catron '17

Politcal Science Major

Yorba Linda, CA


I am from a small, suburban town of Yorba Linda, located in Orange County, CA. Coming from large, public high school, I wanted to switch it up for my higher education. The moment I found Westmont, I knew that was where God was directing me.


I am studying Political Science but love the diverse education a liberal arts college offers. My goal with my education is not only hoping to attend graduate school, but also be a woman of knowledge and virtue; I hope when I graduate from Westmont I am able to impact people’s lives with the skillset I have acquired and global knowledge.


I am so grateful to be a part of the Westmont community and thank God for leading me here.

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Danielle Costa

Danielle Costa '17

Kinesiology Major

Santa Clara, CA


I was born in Santa Clara, CA and never really left until I made the decision to attend Westmont College. I am Mexican and Portuguese and the youngest of three children. I have an older sister and an older brother who has mental disabilities. I am a first generation college student, my parents didn't finish high school and my sister decided not to go to college. Ever since I can remember, people told me that I needed to go to college, but I never really thought of it as something that was actually possible for me until I started the AVID Program in 8th grade. AVID is a college readiness program that aims to close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college and other postsecondary opportunities. Through AVID, college became a realistic goal that helped drive me to do well in all of my classes, take numerous AP and Honors classes, and get involved with extracurricular activities. I applied to many different colleges: a couple UC's, some CSU's and three private schools. Westmont was my top choice although it was way out of reach financially even with all the scholarships, but God has been faithful to allow me to continue my education at such an amazing place.


Here at Westmont I'm intending to pursue a Kinesiology major following the Occupational Therapy track with a possible minor in Biology. My brother has mental disabilities and has always held a huge place in my heart. I love being around him and working with children and adults like him. When I'm done with college, my family has chosen to pass on guardianship of my brother to me from my grandparents.





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Kailie Grinder

Kailie Grinder '16

Art Major with Economic and Business Minor

Saitama, Japan


As a missionary kid born and raised in Japan by parents who were born and raised in Hawai’i, I had quite an unusual upbringing. From kindergarten until 6th grade, I attended Japanese public school where I learned all of my school subjects, communication and relational skills in the Japanese language. Despite my dominant use of Japanese with my friends and family, my parents also molded into me a sense of Hawaiian and American culture. Because of this, I have always questioned my cultural identity. Here I had three cultures and languages fighting inside of me to take control of how I act and think. Which one was I supposed to choose?


After I graduated from Japanese elementary school, my parents enrolled me into a private international school in Tokyo to learn English. It was during the summer before my sophomore year of high school that my family moved from Japan to Hawai’i. After going through all the culture shocks and intense language learning, I now find myself here at Westmont College!


Although I am not entirely sure why, I think God has definitely had a hand in my life as he has gradually brought me across the Pacific Ocean to Westmont College. Along the way, he has given me many unique experiences and gifts that make me the person I am today. Being an English Language Learner during my middle and high school years, the immense trouble I went through trying to express what I thought and felt in English compromised my identity. However, the one way in which I could still fully be myself was through art. This was the one place where it did not matter that English was my second language. I could mold my emotions, thoughts, personality and beliefs into my art pieces and communicate myself to the world. In other words, the passion and love for art that God gave me saved my life.


My past and cultural background have inspired me to take advantage of the gifts and resources God has given me. Through my love for art and  pursuit of a career in the art world, I desire to be the bridge between different cultures as I myself have lived a life crossing many of these bridges.

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Kasey Iverson '18
English Major
Glendora, CA

I am from the city of Glendora, CA, located about an hour east of Los Angeles in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. All my life, I've attended small, private Christian schools, and have always loved the close-knit, supportive community that a small private school can offer. When choosing a college, Westmont College stood out for its beautiful location, welcoming community, and, above all, commitment to molding its students to be fully equipped world citizens with a deep understanding of the Christian faith.

Even though neither of my parents attended or finished college, they always encouraged me to pursue a higher education and worked hard to make that possible for me. I've always loved reading and the power and beauty of words, so pursuing an English major seemed the natural course for my college career. I look forward to learning more about the multitude of ways in which literature allows humans to explore and explain the many joys and problems they encounter in life.

While at Westmont, I hope to develop my love for learning and deepen my understanding of the interconnectedness of the disciplines in a true liberal arts fashion. I also hope to further develop and grow in my faith, and am beyond grateful and blessed to be able to do so in such a wonderful, uplifting place.


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Kimberly Leyva '18

Liberal Studies Major

Santa Ana, CA


Although I was born in Santa Ana, California, I grew up in Mexico from the ages of two to eleven. When I reached the age of eleven, my family moved back to the states so that I'd receive a better education. Going into the sixth grade not knowing any English, and adapting to a new culture has shaped my life to this point. With God's guidance and determination, I have been able to attend my dream college, Westmont. There are no words I can use to describe how blessed I am to be where I am right now and none of this would've happened if it wasn't for the guidance of God.

I am a Liberal Studies major. I hope to become an elementary teacher with an emphasis on Hispanic studies, and give back to my community. I am so thankful to be part of Westmont and I look forward to what God has for me in order to keep growing and blessing others.


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Sherry Luo '18

Sociology Major

Rochester, NY

Emily McBride '18

English and Secondary Education Major

Carnation, WA


I am from Carnation, Washington, which is a small suburb of Seattle that's nestled nicely between the Microsoft headquarters and a small, rural farming town full of You-Pick-'Em berry patches, cows, and waterfalls. Because of its location, it has a spicy mix of cultures and people, which is something I've always loved.

None of my grandparents attended college, but both my parents did, and I received so much support from my family during the college process. I grew up in a Christian home, and I've always known that my faith is something I really value. The support from my family and the strong Jesus community I saw at Westmont both drew me to this school, and I am so happy here.

My junior year of high school, my family started hosting exchange students from Uruguay and Germany. In my senior year, I traveled to Uruguay for three weeks to study community service. I fell in love with the Spanish language, culture, and the concept of education. Because of that incredible experience, I am now studying English and Spanish on the secondary education track so that I can teach English as a second language. Through Westmont, and more specifically my experience as a Liberal Arts Ambassador, I believe that God will use my experiences to grow me in faith, empathy, virtue, and patience, so that I can serve Him through my profession and all the rest of my life.





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Ambassador Alumni


Amy Armento '09


Mathematics and Spanish Majors


Solana Beach, CA

Steven Auclair

Steven Auclair '15


Social Science Major


Santa Barbara, CA






Tanya Ayala

Tanya Ayala '15


Communications and Spanish Major


Moraga, CA



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Joe Bagdanov

Joseph Bagdanov '14


Religious Studies and Philosophy Major


Nuevo, CA



Elizabeth Barrios

Elizabeth Barrios '16

Leslie Bazan

Leslie Bazan '15


Kinesiology Major


Buellton, CA




Benjamin Bisson '13


Art Major


Woolwich, ME



Stefanie Burgess '12


English Major


Yucaipa, CA



Anthony Campbell '11


Economics & Business and Philosophy Majors


Sacramento, CA



Breanna Celaya

Breanna Celaya '14


Economics & Business and Major


San Dimas, CA




Lanice Cooper '13


Pre-med Major


Chowchilla, CA



Sabrina Dangc '11


Mathematics and Economics & Business Majors


Redding, CA

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Emalie Diaz '11


History Major


Truckee, CA


Jane Dietrich '14


Psychology Major


West Hartford, CT




Andrew Elia '09


Sociology Major


Turlock, CA


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Jennie Estrada '08

Stephanie Farnum '13


Theate Arts Major


Ema Irene Gonzalez '12


Secondary Education, History Majors


Frazier Park, CA



Jennifer Griffith '09


Mathematics and Religious Studies Majors


Littleton, CO


Rachel Harril

Rachel Harril '15


Communication Studies Major


Long Beach, CA


Kristiana Hatcher '12


Social Science Major


Vienna, Austria




Fatima Jawad '13



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Evelyn Martin '11


Political Science Major


San Mateo, CA




Brandi Nakamoto '12


Sociology Major


Honolulu, HI

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Sally Pineda '11


Political Science and Theatre Arts Majors


Visalia, CA



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Christine "Toni" Ramirez '12


Music Performance & Communication Studies Majors


Glendora, CA


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Danica Rosendale '13


Liberal Studies Major


Murrieta, CA

Leah Sadoian

Leah Sadoian


Communication Studies Major


Dinuba, CA



Melissa Sanchez

Melissa Sanchez '14


Sociology Major


Carpinteria, CA



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Talia Sheets '13


Art Major


San Diego, CA


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Bradlee Smith

Bradlee "Trude" Smith


Philosophy Major


Nuevo, CA






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Leah Smith '13


Economics and Business Major


Phoenix, AZ

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Gerardo Soria '12


Biology Major


Ojai, CA




Ellee Stewart '12


Art Major


Houston, TX




Teri Tan '08


Communication Studies Major


Taichung, Taiwan


San Francisco, CA




Dallas Thueringer '13


Biochemistry, Biology Majors


Hemet, CA

Andy Wood

Andy Wood '15


English Major with History Minor


Ometepec, Mexico





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Lillian Yamase '13


Liberal Studies Major

Tokyo, Japan