ABOUT SUMMER SEARCH

Summer Search is a 7-year mentorship program for promising students facing unjust obstacles. Students join the program in their Sophomore year of High School and are supported through College or other Post-Secondary pursuits. 


We provide comprehensive support through one on one mentorship from trained staff, peer-led group mentorship , career development, goal setting, and adventurous summer experiences.

CONTACT SUMMER SEARCH

  • T 415.362.5225
  • F 415.362.5274
  • info@summersearch.org
  • 101 Howard, SF, CA 94105

OUR VIDEOS

Supporting Young People

Voices of Summer Search 2018

Deer Hill Summer Experience

CEO, Dr. Mark Spencer

Our Team

LeAna Powell

School and Community Engagement Coordinator

Josue Theosmy

Program Associate

Program Associate – He/Him/His As a first-generation college grad and...

Adriana Espinal

Post-Secondary Program Manager

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers Adriana joined Summer Search in August 2022 as...

JORDAN WALTERS

Post-Secondary Program Coordinator

Jordan Walters – Pronouns: She/Her/Hers Jordan was born and raised...

Laili Gohartaj

Associate Director of Institutional Partnerships

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers   Laili is passionate about equity and access...

Bryn VanAlstyne

Interim Co-Executive Director/ Regional Program Director

Bryn has 19 years of experience in youth work, non-profit...

LeAna Powell

Position: School and Community Engagement Coordinator
Email: lpowell@summersearch.org

Josue Theosmy

Position: Program Associate
Email: jtheosmy@summersearch.org

Program Associate – He/Him/His

As a first-generation college grad and alumnus of the Summer Search program, Josue has seen first-hand the benefits of mentoring and providing opportunities to youths that would otherwise not receive those opportunities. Josue is passionate about youth empowerment and through Summer Search he became interested in working in the fields of education, non-profit work, and youth mental health.

Josue has worked as a team leader for the Jumpstart Americorps program, family service provider and therapeutic mentor for youths ages 4-21. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts Lowell with a Degree in Psychology concentrating in Community Psychology and minoring in Criminal Justice.

Outside of work, Josue enjoys boxing, sports, art, music, films, and spending time with friends and family.

Adriana Espinal

Adriana Espinal

Position: Post-Secondary Program Manager
Email: aespinal@summersearch.org

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Adriana joined Summer Search in August 2022 as the Post-Secondary Program Manager. Prior to Summer Search, Adriana led the MITES program at MIT, a summer residential program for approximately 80 underserved and underrepresented high school students from across the country. This included planning and executing the summer program, organizing logistics and special events, training and managing teams of 40+ mentors and instructors, and ensuring overall student well-being. Adriana also led the recruitment and selection process for the programs, overseeing application pools of approximately 2,000 each year for four years. Adriana loves working with young people, especially those from historically marginalized communities, and empowering them to thrive.

Adriana earned a Bachelor’s of Science in environmental engineering from the University of Florida (Go Gators!). Outside of work hours, Adriana enjoys exploring the outdoors, traveling to new places, being involved in her church, and spending quality time with friends and family.

Sonika Singal

Professional Title: Managing Director, Accenture

JORDAN WALTERS

Position: Post-Secondary Program Coordinator

Jordan Walters – Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Jordan was born and raised in the Germantown section of Philadelphia.  She earned both her B.A. and M.Ed. from Temple University’s College of Education (now called the College of Education and Human Development). Jordan comes to the Post-Secondary Program Coordinator position with almost a decade of experience in academic advising, admissions counseling, and student support services. Before coming to Summer Search, Jordan served as an academic advisor at Penn State Abington helping first generation students make the transition from high school to college. In her free time, Jordan enjoys spending time with her husband, trying new foods, and exploring museums.

Laili Gohartaj

Position: Associate Director of Institutional Partnerships
Email: lgohartaj@summersearch.org

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

 

Laili is passionate about equity and access to transformative opportunities for people who have been excluded or marginalized. As a fundraiser and grants panelist, she encourages funders to acknowledge and dismantle white supremacy in philanthropy. Laili is on the board of the Berkeley Arts Center, a 2022 Periplus Fellow, and a Western States Arts Federation Emerging Leader of color in 2018 and advisor through 2022.

 

Laili is a baker, artist, and writer with a Bachelor of Music in clarinet performance and a Master of Arts in English with a creative nonfiction focus. Laili considers Jurassic Park the greatest film of all time, once posed as a press photographer in hopes of meeting Ta-Nehisi Coates (she didn’t,) loves EDM and grows African violets.

Howard Scott

Professional Title: Managing Director, PJT Park Hill

Ty Curry

Professional Title: ZS Associates

Haixia Yu

Professional Title: Top 100 Retail Influencer | C-Suite Advisor | Global Market Expansion

Bryn VanAlstyne

Position: Interim Co-Executive Director/ Regional Program Director
Email: bvanalstyne@summersearch.org

Bryn has 19 years of experience in youth work, non-profit management, and mission-driven organizations. She has held leadership positions at City Year Boston, City of Cambridge (MA), and Citizen Schools. Most recently, Bryn was the Director of Larkin Street Academy at Larkin Street Youth Services where she oversaw the organization’s art, education, employment, and youth leadership programs which include, job readiness, individual employment coaching, courses to career pathways, GED classes, college readiness, college scholarships, post-secondary counseling and youth advocacy work. Bryn is a first-generation college student who received her undergraduate degree in American Studies from the University of Massachusetts Boston and a graduate degree in public policy from Tufts University.