August 21, 2018

Welcome to Summer Search’s first podcast!

For our pilot episode, five Summer Search Bay Area college students sat down for a lively and candid discussion about identity (race, class, gender, sexual orientation, and more) and the challenges of navigating between many different “bubbles” in their hometowns, on summer trips, on their college campuses, and out in the world.

The podcast episode, entitled “A Conversation on Identity,” was created and hosted by college Summer Searcher Kenny Mai, who worked as a summer fellow in our Bay Area office.

Listen on iTunes, Google Play, or SoundCloud.

Meet the Participants

Bay Area Summer Searchers
From left to right:

Allan Ahumada is going into his sophomore year at Berkeley City College.

April Rojas is entering her third year at UC Berkeley. April and Allan went to the same high school.

De’Ahevon “Dee” Johnson recently finished her first year at Berkeley City College.

Kenny Mai, podcast host, is going into his sophomore year at Swarthmore College and is studying Computer Science, Philosophy, and Sociology.

Abigail “Abi” Serrano started her higher education journey at Contra Costa College before transferring to UC Davis, where she is going into her senior year, majoring in Physical Anthropology.

Summer Search podcastRecording the podcast in Summer Search’s San Francisco office.

“My inspiration, and what I hope is a big takeaway, for this podcast is my belief in the power of small conversations like this one to eventually spark large-scale change,” Kenny explained. “Summer Search is in a unique position to foster this type of dialogue amongst its students and staff. I think it’s critical that we not only navigate our own personal identities but also explore others’ unique struggles and oppressions to build coalitions and solidarity between different marginalized groups. Only by harnessing such collective power and disrupting the culture of silence can we deconstruct America’s systems of injustice.”

Podcast Time Stamps

00:00 – Opening introductions.

5:31 – Question 1: What are some challenges you have faced regarding identity in college, work, or your everyday life?

15:37 – Question 2: How do you navigate spaces when you don’t look like everyone else?

46:12 – Question 3: How have you dealt with the dilemma of whether or not to speak out about your own identity or on behalf of your community?

58:00 – Advice for Summer Searchers.


We hope you’ll give our first student-led podcast a listen.

Join us in saying thank you to Kenny, April, Dee, Abi, and Allan for sharing a little about their Summer Search experiences. If you want to join the conversation about identity, leave a comment below and share your story!

Podcast Credits

Director, Writer, and Moderator: Kenny Mai

Producer: Nathan Becker

Executive Producers: Liz Hurst and Meha Davé

Panelists: Allan Ahumada, Dee Johnson, April Rojas, and Abigail Serrano

Editor: Brendan Hill

Associate Producers: Brendan Hill and Fernando Serrato

Casting: Fernando Serrato and Kenny Mai

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