Mural painted by Channin Fulton and volunteers from Artelexia
Ilianna Ramos is a second-year graduate student in CSUSM’s Master of Social Work (MSW) program and graduated from the University of California Davis in 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts in Chicana/o Studies and a minor in Education and Communication. Growing up in a low-income household motivated her to further her education and to attend college.
As an undergraduate student, Ilianna conducted campus tours, offered tutoring services and facilitated holistic workshops that were aimed to increase retention rates for Latina/o students and empowered marginalized and underserved middle and high school students to pursue higher education.
After receiving her BA degree, Ilianna continued to be an advocate for social justice in underprivileged communities and worked with undocumented students by helping them connect with many resources they needed. Illiana facilitated Spanish-speaking workshops at high schools that increased parent involvement and assisted underserved students with their college admission applications. Ilianna’s life experiences and passion for serving others has led her to pursue a career in social work and she aims to create a world that stands for equity and cultivates self-growth.
In 2016, Ilianna enrolled in CSUSM’s Master of Social Work program and was chosen from a large pool of MSW students to receive the California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC) Title IV-E Child Welfare Stipend. During her enrollment in this program, Ilianna provided individual and group therapy to high school and middle school students in the Sweetwater Union High School District who are challenged with mental health and behavioral challenges.
Ilianna currently interns at the County of San Diego’s Health and Human Services Agency Child Welfare Services division where she works with diverse families and ensures that youth are living in a safe and healthy environment. Ilianna will be graduating this May and has already secured employment with the County of San Diego. She is certain her educational trajectory in social work has provided her with the tools and knowledge needed to continue her commitment to working with marginalized and underserved communities.