Meet Our Staff

Everyone at the OC EOPS program is dedicated to helping our students reach their goals. We understand each one of our students has a different story, faces obstacles and has many different questions but we support each one of our students and work hard every day to make sure our students are able to accomplish what they set out to do. We are welcoming and understanding and want our students to thrive.

 

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Cesar Flores, M.S.
EOPS/CARE Coordinator

As a graduate of UC Santa Barbara, Cesar completed his Bachelor of Arts  degree majoring in Sociology and minoring in Spanish Literature in 1997. He received his Master's in Counseling from Cal Lutheran University. Cesar’s professional Career  and journey in higher education,  officially began dating back to 1999,  once being hired by his alma mater (UCSB) to work as an Admissions and Outreach Counselor, targeting various High-schools and community Colleges through-out southern California.

Cesar’s professional roles with both the UC and the California Community College system grew  and evolved to include outreach, recruitment, retention, program development, coordination and program implementation.

As a product of the community college system and in particular, the EOPS program himself (while attending Santa Barbara City College), this has fueled his passion for serving students at the community college level, who have not always had access to higher education and viewed higher education and obtaining a degree as unattainable. Helping students with limited resources realize their full potential to create an avenue for educational, social and economic mobility brings him great fulfillment,  pride and love for his profession. More specifically, as the EOPS/CARE Program Coordinator,

Cesar started serving as EOPS/CARE Coordinator/Counselor in 2011 at Moorpark College and transitioned to Oxnard College in his current role, in 2014.

 

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Ross Fontes, M.S.
EOPS Counselor

Ross Fontes has been an EOPS counselor at Oxnard College for over 20 years. He grew up in Southern California; Oxnard and Compton.  He is a motivator and a listener who believes that every student has the power to succeed even when they don’t believe in themselves. He enjoys connecting and conversing with students from all walks of life. Ross believes that education is the passport to the future, and that the education of the EOPS student is paramount to the meaningfulness of higher education, the strength of the local and national economy, and the expansion of democracy and equality in America.

After graduating from Oxnard high School, Ross attended Ventura College and transferred to the University of California at Santa Barbara where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies with multiple emphasis in Sociology, History and Black Studies. He earned his master’s degree in Educational Leadership at California State University at Northridge. Ross’ career experience includes working as a Youth Counselor for the California Youth Authority, office assistant for Media Relations at UCSB, directing the UCSB summer bridge program (STEP), counseling EOP students and coordinating the African American Student Cultural Center at UCSB.

His passion and purpose over the past twenty years at Oxnard College has been counseling EOPS students and helping them gain confidence, develop the necessary academic and personal skill set to continue on with their educational journey, think critically, act responsibly and contribute to the greater good of society.

 

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Gloria Lopez, M.S.
EOPS Counselor, Outreach

Gloria grew up and in the agricultural city of Oxnard, California.  Currently she is an EOP&S Academic/Outreach Counselor at Oxnard College.  Gloria brings wisdom, sensitivity and support to many students who are in need of guidance.  She possesses a strong compassion working with ex-convicts and drug addicts.  She believes that there is a way out of all their madness by using education as a tool to improve their lives.

Gloria attended Oxnard and Ventura College then transferred to California State University, Northridge.  She majored in Chicano Studies and minored in Sociology with an emphasis in counseling and interviewing in addition, holds a certificate of achievement in Chemical Dependency. Gloria worked as a Drug/Gang counselor in the heart of San Fernando and Canoga Park, Ca. for over 5 years. In May of 2000, Gloria accomplished another goal in her life by completing her Master’s degree in Counseling and Guidance from California Lutheran University. 

Gloria’s mission is to teach young women and men how to over many obstacles such as peer pressure, low-self-esteem and encourage them to pursue a higher education.  It has been a dream come true for Gloria to come back to her community and work closely with young people in need.

She feels that the “CHOICES” you make in your life truly do determine your destiny.

 

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Everardo G. Rivera, M.S.
Lead CARE/EOPS Counselor

Everardo was a first-generation, veteran, low-income, and educationally disadvantage college student at Oxnard College.  The educational opportunity he received as an EOPS student at Oxnard College has been a transformational experience.  He has walked on a road less traveled.  He is forever grateful for taking advantage of the opportunities that were given to him.  He values the power of education and the transformative change via the educational pipeline.

At Oxnard College, he earned an A.A. in History; transfered to UCLA to earn a B.A. in History with a Minor in Chicano Studies; and continued his education at California Lutheran University (CLU), where he earned an M.S. in Counseling and Guidance, with Specialization on College Student Personnel.  He has been the Lead CARE Counselor for the past 12 years, empowering, co-powering, and motivating single-parents and EOPS Students.  

He loves gardening, travelling, learning, cooking, and living the present moment. He tries to live by a simple quote:  “We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community.” -Cesar E. Chavez

 

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Robert Chaparro, M.S
EOPS Counselor

Robert was born and raised in Oxnard by parents who valued discipline, hard work and compassion towards others. He has four talented siblings who have been an important part of his life, one of whom is Dr. Linda Chaparro, his mentor and amazing sister.  He has been a counselor throughout his professional career, and was at Ventura College for the last 20 years serving as an EOPS Counselor.

Educationally, he attended Ventura College, Oxnard College, UCSB and Cal Lutheran University. He was an EOPS Student at Ventura College and an EOP Student at UCSB. He feels that both of these family oriented programs taught him the value of compassion and never-ending support especially during the times when he felt school was very difficult. He feels blessed to be an EOPS Counselor!

He lives in Ventura with his lovely wife, Mary, but is looking to move back to Oxnard to be closer to their families and in particular, his 93 year old mother who has always been his foundation. He has two sons, Buddy and Ryan, both of whom make him very proud! He is excited and honored to be part of the Oxnard College Team to help serve our students who deserve the very best!

 

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Renee Esquivel, M.S.
Part-time EOPS Counselor

Renee grew up in Santa Paula and is a first generation college student. She began her education at Ventura College where she received an AA in Sociology. She earned a degree in Sociology from CSUN and continued on with her education by earning a Master's Degree in Counseling/Guidance along with her PPS Credential from California Lutheran University.

Renee is a passionate advocate for all students reaching their full potential. She strives to develop and nurture lasting and impactful relationships in student’s lives. As an EOPS counsellor, she cherishes her ability to encourage and provide academic support with each student the at she comes across. Her hope is for every student that leaves her office is inspired and motivated to pursue their educational/or career goals regardless of any adversity they may be facing. Consequently, Renee wants the students she meets to embrace the journey of learning and to enjoy the ride, rather than worrying too much about the destination.

Her personal life motto is: “Work Hard and dream BIG....there's no limit to what you can DO!!

Renee enjoys long distance hiking and participating in Spartan races. A fun fact about her: her first over sees trip was to Ireland.

 

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Linda Traux, M.S.
Part-time EOPS Counselor

Linda is a proud member of the Oxnard community who grew up specifically in South Oxnard.  After graduating from Hueneme High School, she attended Oxnard College for her Associate’s Degree, University of La Verne for her Bachelor’s in Psychology and her Master’s in Business Administration. After working in Strategic Marketing Management for a decade, she decided to go back to school and pursue a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology at California Lutheran University.

As a first-generation student she shared in her own personal struggles with integrating school and balancing  work and her personal life. Linda shared that through her journey she often only saw closed doors and it took time to learn about her capabilities moving away from fear and how to open doors for herself. She chose to go back to work at Oxnard College as she feels that there are many students, like her, that need encouragement, guidance, mentorship, support and to learn that we are all worthy and capable of attaining any goal we set forth in motion.  She has now been with Oxnard College for over 6 years as Mental Health Psychotherapist, and she supervisors students who graduated with their Master’s Degrees in Psychology and are working on their hours towards licensure. She joined the EOPS team June of 2019 as an EOPS Counselor which she is really hyped about! She teaches courses such as REACH and Emotional Intelligence here at Oxnard College and is also an Adjunct Faculty member at Pepperdine University teaching in the Graduate School of Psychology.

She says that she can now really play a key role in walking along-side the student through their educational journey opening doors! Linda is now working on her Doctorate in Educational Leadership at California Lutheran University as her long term goal is to open doors for students and inspire staff and faculty as a Dean or Vice President.

A fun fact…. She has a pretty mean 3 pointer and is in the Ventura County Sports Hall of Fame for Basketball.

 

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Linda Callaway 
EOPS/CARE Technician

Walking into the EOPS Office 21 years ago as a student, I said to myself that someday I would work in that department.  My hopes and wishes came true when I was hired as a Student Services Assistant for the EOPS Program.  My vision has always been to provide excellent customer service to all students regardless of who they are. 

Now twenty-one years later, I am here as an EOPS/CARE technician.  I love working with people and I get that opportunity every day when I come to work in the EOPS/CARE Program. 

This program has helped so many students achieve their dreams of getting a degree or transferring to a university.  I hope that in some small way, I have also been instrumental in helping the students.

 

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Zenaida Peña
EOPS/CARE Technician

Zenaida is number 8 of 11 siblings from a military family where her father served in the United States Navy. She was born in Richmond, where her father was stationed at Norfolk, Virginia. Later, she and her family transferred to Subic Bay, Philippines after four years. Zenaida and her family returned to the United State and relocated to Long Beach, California where her father retired at San Pedro Naval Base, upon completing 20 years of military service. Following his retirement, she and her family moved to Oxnard where her father was employed at the local U.S. Postal Office.

Zenaida has been living in Ventura County since 1970 where she attended elementary and junior high schools. She graduated at Channel Island, then attended Ventura  and Oxnard Community Colleges. Her initial career path took her to the mortgage and banking industry before being hired at Oxnard Community College with a provisional position as the Admin Assistant II to the VP of Student Services. After a few years, Zenaida took the opportunity to take a full-time position as an EOPS/CARE technician where she's been employed since that time.

While at Oxnard College, she has enjoyed working with an ever-changing faculty and staff and meeting and assisting students. 

 

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Anthony Garcia
Peer Advisor

Anthony was born and raised in Oxnard,CA.  He has been attending Oxnard College and been an EOPS Peer Advisor for two years. He takes great pride in being a part of the EOPS family by helping students who have the same goals and ambitions as himself.  He is graduating in May 2020 and is planning to transfer to CSU Northridge and study Sports Medicine.  Anthony’s goal is to become a physical therapist for athletes.  In his free time, Anthony likes to spend time with his family and friends, play and watch soccer, and jam out with his guitar.

 

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Jaime Hernandez
Peer Advisor

My name is Jaime Hernandez and I was born and raised in Oxnard. I have been working at the EOPS Office for a year and I really enjoy it. I like helping fellow students who have gone or are going through the same struggles as I did when I first started coming to Oxnard College.

During my time at Oxnard College, I received multiple degrees and I am in the process of attending the Police academy in Whittier, CA. My goal is to become either a Sheriff or a police officer in my community.

During my free time, I enjoy spending time with my wife and kids. We enjoy taking hikes and going on adventurous family vacations.