male student in front of sign

McCarthy Center 101 — for CORO Youth Fellows

In this week’s blog, 2023 CORO Youth Fellow, Daniel Cheung shares who he is and what he has learned about the Leo T. McCarthy Center and its programs from his one week internship. Learn more about his first real college experience and what rang true with him after attending the graduation of the 2023 Equity Interns.

Hello Everyone! I am Daniel Cheung, a rising junior at Archbishop Riordan High School and a 2023 CORO Youth Fellow from the Exploring Leadership cohort. In my free time, I enjoy playing basketball, reselling shoes, and listening to music among other activities. Throughout this summer, I have been a part of the Exploring Leadership program at CORO where 16 kids from across the San Francisco Bay Area meet from Mondays through Fridays over 6 weeks to connect and work together to learn to become leaders. In the program, we are taught to use different CORO tools such as OARRS (Outcomes, Agenda, Roles, Responsibilities, and Summary) to achieve our goals and complete a Community Action Project. In our fourth week, each one of the Youth Fellows are assigned to a different internship position, mine being the Leo T. McCarthy Center at the University of San Francisco.

During my week-long journey here, my relations and connections to the center and USF have grown exponentially and I learned about the center’s mission, what goes on behind the scenes, and finally, the different programs. This is my first time being on the campus. My only previous experience with USF was merely seeing Lone Mountain and admiring the famous steps when driving by or catching a ride on the bus. I didn’t even know that it was called Lone Mountain!

On my first day here, I met Derick Brown, Senior Director of the center and my internship host. Over the next couple days, as I settled in, I was able to meet some of the other essential members of the staff: Beth Gonzales, Leslie Lombre, Jacqueline Ramos, Cassidy Steele, and Star Plaxton-Moore. On Wednesday, I was able to sit and have a meeting with Carla Trujillo and understand her role as coordinator of both the LTMC Equity Interns program and the Rising Dons program which is soon to come.

On Thursday, I got to watch the Equity Interns’ at work. They gave their final presentations. Seven different groups presented their own topic of an issue in elementary education. One topic that stuck with me was Kathy Su’s and Eden Groum’s presentation on The Importance of Bilingual Education. It rang true with me as I am a bilingual Chinese-American who was born and raised in San Francisco. Cathy talked about how she was one of the only teachers that spoke Spanish at the YMCA campus where she was interning and she was needed to communicate to a class that primarily spoke Spanish. This is a prime example of why teachers need to be able to speak at least one other language besides English — so that they can communicate with students who may not be able to speak it. This is very relevant in San Francisco as there are many students who are immigrants who need to thrive and have an optimal learning experience in school.

I have experienced first hand what it is like to go to school with no knowledge of the English language. When I first started pre-school, I couldn’t understand English as I was only speaking Chinese at home. As a result, I was struggling to fit in especially with no one that spoke the language that I was familiar with. If I had a teacher that could teach me English and use Chinese to help me understand, I would have been able to catch on much much quicker.

After spending the week at the Leo T. McCarthy Center, I’m so thankful for the opportunity to come see what the center is all about. I also want to give a shout out to the staff for being great hosts and making me feel welcome here at USF.

Check out our Equity Interns program here!

Archbishop Riordan High SchoolChinese-AmericanCommunity Action ProjectCORO Youth FellowEden GroumEducationEquity InternsExploring Leadershiphigh schoolKathy SuYMCA

llombre • July 16, 2023

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