Success Stories

On the path to self-sufficiency and beyond,
our job partners and alumni share their success.

 

Greater DC Region

From Students to Staff: How Two Alumni Give Back

When Urban Alliance students graduate, they’re never really leaving the program. The door is always open for whatever support or guidance is needed.…

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Chicago

Reina Huguley, Chicago 2021

For 2021 Kenwood Academy graduate Reina Huguley, becoming an Urban Alliance intern meant more time to concentrate on her schooling. “I was…

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Detroit

Walter Savage, Detroit 2019

For Detroiter Walter Savage, becoming an Urban Alliance intern has helped him lay a foundation for success. “UA has impacted my life in a way that…

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Detroit

Airreona Godfrey, Detroit 2020

A senior at Frank Cody High School in Detroit when she joined Urban Alliance, Airreona knew she wanted to make something of her life and transcend…

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Greater DC Region

Jeovanny Diaz, Northern Virginia 2020

TC Williams High School senior Jeovanny Diaz said that before joining Urban Alliance, he had been “struggling a lot,” but this program gave him…

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Dalante Rhoden, Detroit 2019

Dalante Rhoden joined Urban Alliance with a desire to gain more work experience, but ultimately had a firm plan to follow in his father’s footsteps as…

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Danilo Andrade, Northern Virginia 2019

Before Urban Alliance, Danilo “Dan” Andrade worked at a car wash, freezing in the winter and sweltering in the summer. But he thought that was the…

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Chicago

Jasmine Love - Chicago 2019

Jasmine Love was excited for her first professional experience with Urban Alliance. “I’m from the South Side of Chicago,” she said. “When you…

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Baltimore

Deshon Williams - Baltimore 2019

As a career and technical education student at Mergenthaler Vocational Technical High School, Deshon Williams learned a lot about the individual…

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Baltimore

Donnell Bonaparte, Jr. - Baltimore 2019

Walking into the Baltimore City Public Schools Office of Communication on his first day as an Urban Alliance intern, Donnell Bonaparte, Jr. was…

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Greater DC Region

Denardo Worthy, DC 2019

“Urban Alliance meant another family for me,” said Denardo. “There’s a lot of people out there that don’t have [any]one to look up to,” Denardo said, but Urban Alliance “gives you a paid internship, it gives you a mentor, someone to look up to, talk to, or just someone there to be there for you … It helps me feel not alone. It helps me feel that that no matter what somebody is always watching me, rooting for me, shouting for me.”

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Chicago

Obama Youth Jobs Corps

A Life-Changing Opportunity

“Part of the goal of this program is to expose you to what’s possible…Everybody here has already shown extraordinary talent and initiative. All of you all are focused in a way that I can’t say I necessarily was when I was your age. So you guys are already ahead of the game…Part of what we want you guys to all feel is the confidence to know that none of this stuff is beyond your capacities. We want you to feel that in your gut, that there is nothing you can’t figure out. And so if this program helped anything, it is for you guys to figure out that.” – President Barack Obama

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Chicago

Makiah Watson, Chicago 2018

“Because of Urban Alliance, I suddenly believed that I really could do anything in this world. This internship has been both a joy and a learning experience.”

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Baltimore

Roselany Montero, Baltimore 2018

Roselany Montero has big dreams — and thanks to Urban Alliance, she feels like her dreams are within reach. “They prepared us to do anything,”…

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Debby Jaldin, Northern Virginia 2018

When Debby Jaldin and her mother used to pass by Virginia Tech’s campus, they would joke about how she wanted to go there one day. That day came…

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Valeria Belmonte - Northern Virginia 2018

In high school, Valeria Belmonte was mostly focused on working. She had a job at Chipotle, and didn’t really see herself going on to college. So…

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Rene Santos, Northern Virginia 2018

Rene Santos was confused. He was all over the place. He didn’t know what his future would hold. Then he found Urban Alliance.

“Before that I…

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Greater DC Region

Dejuan Johnson, Montgomery County 2018

Before finding Urban Alliance, Dejuan Johnson, an ambitious and driven young man, encountered mostly closed doors. “Before this program, I was…

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Greater DC Region

Khadijah Gikeneh, DC 2018

Khadijah Gikeneh grew up east of the Anacostia River, a traditionally underserved part of Washington, DC, and experienced a traumatic childhood marked…

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Eva Mercado, Northern Virginia 2018

Before joining Urban Alliance, Eva Mercado worked alongside her entire family at night in a newspaper warehouse that “lacked ventilation, was…

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Blanca Zelaya, Northern Virginia 2018

Blanca Zelaya was eating lunch in her high school cafeteria when she overheard an Urban Alliance (UA) staff member telling her friend about the…

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Chicago

Elisabethe Ocon Calderon, Chicago 2013

In 2012, Elisabethe Calderon made a decision that transformed her senior year of high school and shaped her plans for the future. She attended an…

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Glenda Flores, Northern Virginia 2017

Glenda Flores has always wanted to be a pediatrician, but when she shared that goal with her school counselor, she was told it wasn’t a realistic…

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Eddie Amoah, Northern Virginia 2016

At first, Eddie Amoah wanted to quit his Urban Alliance internship. But his UA program coordinator had seen how much he had already grown during…

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Mariyamawit (Mariyam) Shiferaw, Northern Virginia 2018

2018 Northern Virginia intern Mariyamawit (Mariyam) Shiferaw wants to work in the fashion industry after college.

“She’s focused; she’s…

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Greater DC Region

Idalia Zavala-Mejia, DC 2018

Idalia Zavala-Mejia’s plans for the future radically changed after joining Urban Alliance. She never saw herself attending college, but now wants to…

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Baltimore

Lauryn Hill, Baltimore 2017

Lauryn came to Urban Alliance with no desire to attend college. But while working with her mentor at the U.S. Centers for Medicaid and Medicare…

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Chicago

Stephon Walker, Chicago 2017

A DeVry University Success Story - "People are always here to help me."

Like many young people, Stephon Walker approached his senior year of high school with a mix of excitement and uncertainty. For him, graduation would…

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Virginia Hospital Center

Interview with Robin Norman, SVP and CFO, about Virginia Hospital Center’s partnership with Urban Alliance.

“The Urban Alliance interns were well prepared and quick learners. The training they received allowed them to perform quality work with very little intervention. Before we knew it, they were able to take on more tasks and work more independently, which is not always the case with High School interns.”

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Chicago

DigitasLBi

When DigitasLBi decided to partner with Urban Alliance in 2012, it wanted to drive the company’s passion for supporting the growth and community in which their Chicago office was located in.

However, it quickly realized that partnering with Urban Alliance also fostered an internal culture of inclusion, and helped DigitasLBi hire a diverse workforce that brought in new, fresh perspectives allowing them to better serve their clients.

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Bloomberg BNA

Interview with Demedre Heulett, Corporate Counsel/ Equal Employment Opportunity Manager, about Bloomberg BNA's partnership with Urban Alliance

“Partnering with Urban Alliance is a great opportunity to mentor and guide students as they think about their future while providing Bloomberg BNA the ability to be active in the local community.”

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Baltimore

William Bates

Baltimore, 2013

William is now an employee at his high school internship site, Wells Fargo, and a senior at Bowie State University majoring in Accounting. “I looked at the program as more than a job,” William said. “It was an opportunity to better myself.”

 
Alexandria Renew

Interview with Karen Pallansch, CEO, and Johnnie Wallace, Environmental Health and Safety Manager

“If you are on company or nonprofit boards, if you work for an organization that doesn’t have Urban Alliance interns, please talk up this amazing and impactful intern program or ask your organization to provide internships or resources to Urban Alliance.”

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Greater DC Region

Artemis Real Estate Partners

Interview with Deborah Harmon, Co-Founder and CEO of Artemis Real Estate Partners, LLC

“Change starts one person at a time. It is our responsibility as business leaders to be an asset in the communities where we live and work. We partner with organizations like Urban Alliance to provide exposure, training and mentoring opportunities to talented students traditionally under-represented in the real estate industry.”

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Greater DC Region

Assima Egbame, DC 2014

Assima Egbame participated in the Urban Alliance High School Internship Program as a senior at Coolidge Senior High School.  From the very beginning…

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Raul Alvarenga

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Raul Alvarenga’09

Urban Alliance is honored to provide young people with the skills necessary to be successful both…

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Mbachur Mbenga

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Mbachur Mbenga ’11

The Alumni Services department is fortunate to serve wonderful Alumni with various backgrounds and career…

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Theodore Stewart

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Theodore Stewart ’11

Can you believe that there are over 1200 DC Alumni, and over 100 Baltimore Alumni? The numbers…

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Theodore Stewart '11

Theodore Stewart ’11 is one of many Baltimore Urban Alliance Alumni who balances a full-time course load and a work-study job on campus.

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Lori-Ann McKenzie-Henry

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Lori-Ann McKenzie-Henry ’07

Margaret Murray Washington Career Senior High School and UA alumna Lori-Ann McKenzie-Henry ‘07 had a…

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Jasmine Gray

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: DC ALUMNA JASMINE GRAY ‘09

Many Interns initially complain about menial tasks like filing or database entry tasks, but DC UA…

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Greater DC Region

Alumni Spotlight: Reggie Tarver II

Elizabeth City State University, UA Class of ‘09

Interned at Corporate Executive Board

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