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Program Mission: HOLA’s College Success Program empowers HOLA graduates to gain the independence and confidence they need to succeed in college and attain a degree.

By providing college access assistance through counseling, workshops, scholarships and job opportunities, HOLA graduates are inspired to reach out for support on their respective campuses and stay involved within the HOLA community.  The Alumni Association was started by students to create a space for dialogue around college related issues, peer counseling, fundraising and networking.

Program Goals:

  • Empower all HOLA graduates to go to college and attain a degree
  • Follow alumni through college by providing support in academics, finances and college planning
  • Inspire alumni to give back to the HOLA community and become positive examples for future HOLA graduates
  • See HOLA graduates become positive leaders in the community

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  • Currently, 83% of alumni in the Class of 2010 are in their fourth year of college.
  • 98% of the tracked scholarship recipients in the Classes of 2011 and 2012 are still enrolled in a 2 year or 4 year college.  Students are attending schools all over the country, including Brown University, Kenyon College, Smith College, UC Berkeley, UCLA, and USC. Click here to see a complete list of schools our students are attending.
  • HOLA’s Scholarship Committee awarded 92 seniors and alumni with scholarships totaling $222,000.
  • Our students represent over 80 colleges across the nation, including 8 out of the 10 UC Campuses.
  • In early November, HOLA staff, volunteers and local alumni assemble more than 100 care packages to send to alumni attending college outside of the Los Angeles area

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Get Involved
Join our weekly conversations in the Facebook Heart of Los Angeles College Access and Alumni Group.

Join the Heart of Los Angeles Alumni Group on Linkedin to connect and network with alumni at your college and explore career opportunities.

Become a member of HOLA’s Alumni Association! The College Success Director will be happy to inform you of upcoming events and opportunities.  To join HOLA’s Alumni Association’s mailing list, email Kevin Franco.



Photo of Kevin Franco
Kevin Franco College Success Director
Work Phone: (213) 389-1148 x222
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Photo of Laura Greenlee
Laura Greenlee College Counselor
Work Phone: (213) 389-1148
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Photo of Ashley Frohlich
Ashley Frohlich Scholarship Coordinator
Work Phone: (213) 389-1148
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Alum Returns to HOLA as Scholar in Residence

After a successful internship with Walt Disney Studios in Burbank already under his belt, HOLA alumni Daniel Lopez is well on his way to achieving his goals of graduating college and using media skills to empower his community. A native Angeleno, Daniel attends California State University of Los Angeles where he studies Communications and Marketing. He is excited to return to his roots as the current Scholar in Residence, a yearlong position offered to an exceptional alum enrolled in college who has demonstrated a desire to give […]

Alumni Spotlight: Maricela Sanchez-Garcia

HOLA alumna and senior at Whitman College in Washington Maricela Sanchez-Garcia is grateful that college has provided her a strong support network that includes professors who continue to challenge her in critical thinking. As a first-generation, working class (FGWC) college student, Maricela has had to face other challenges that aren’t necessarily academically based. One in particular, that many HOLA alumni experience at liberal arts colleges, is being surrounded by peers who come from privileged backgrounds. “Sometimes these individuals aren’t always aware about systemic issues. This may cause some frustration but I think one shouldn’t get discouraged. Times […]

Miguel’s Letter

Hello Friends of Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA)! My name is Miguel Guendolay and I am a recent Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA) alum and college student at Pasadena City College. As I reflect on this past year and where I’ve come from, my heart is filled with gratitude for HOLA and the generosity of people like you. I am proud to say that I myself will be making a donation to help continue the positive impact that HOLA’s academic, arts and athletic programs have […]

College Road Trip Motivates High School Seniors

In recent years, HOLA has been building a college success program geared towards high school students who become the first in their family to attend college. We’ve built a mentoring program focused on college applications and essay writing, college-ready workshops, and a college tour road trip. This semester, sixteen PAT High School seniors hit the road for a four day trip, visiting nine college campuses in Northern California. The group (which included four staff members) bonded during hours of van time, miles of gorgeous scenery, and inspiring outings with HOLA alumni at their campuses. That our students were […]

Alumni Return, This Time As Leaders

In honor of HOLA Alum turned Bridges Middle School Director Silvia Velazquez being named one of JCPenney’s “Leaders of Tomorrow,” we would like to honor two other alumnae who are also full-time staff members here on campus. Sonia Salazar – Class of ’05 Back in 2005, the year PAT High School Director Sonia Salazar graduated from HOLA, there wasn’t an alumni program in place.  However, that didn’t keep Sonia away.  Upon graduating from University of California Santa Barbara in 2009 with a B.A., she was ready to give back to the […]

Oldest HOLA Alum Writes Memoir

  Twenty-six years ago, HOLA began as five kids, one volunteer and a basketball in a church basement. This month, Jonathan Orozco, one of HOLA’s original five, returned to HOLA to share his thoughts and new book with the parents of our Bridges middle school students.  “No matter how busy you are, make time for you kids,” he advised a packed room. “Talk to your kids about who they are and where they come from. A strong sense of identity and belonging could save their lives.” Born in […]


HOLA provides underserved youth with exceptional programs in academics, arts and athletics within a nurturing environment, empowering them to develop their potential, pursue their education and strengthen their communities.


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