Hack the Hood is turning five this year, and to celebrate this milestone we are highlighting the young people who have brought their skills and passions to our program. We'll be profiling a different young leader each month, with Angelica being our June feature.
1. What made you decide to join Hack the Hood (HtH)? When did you start with HtH?
Honestly, I had nothing better to do over the summer, so I gave it a shot and applied. Joining seemed like a good use of my time.
2. What did you learn, that was unexpected? Was there anything that surprised you about the program?
I wasn’t expecting to enjoy coding or web design. I discovered that this is something that I’m curious about and as I transition to college this is a field that I want to pursue seriously.
3. What are your favorite foods?
Love pasta, especially tortellini or anything with pesto! But my food loyalty belongs with french fries…I love them so much! I enjoy eating my french fries with BBQ sauce, ketchup, and ranch dressing.
Insider tip - the best place to get fries in the Bay is Super Duper burger…they’re even better than In-N-Out (sorry, but that’s the truth :))!
4. What do you do for fun?
Before it used to be hanging out with friends and photography. Now that I’m so busy with school, I like to just be at home. Senior year has just been so stressful. When I have a moment to relax, I like to stay home, read an article, watch Netflix, or hang out with friends at home.
5. What’s your favorite TV show?
“The Office” – because it’s so funny, especially the interactions between each other - the jokes are SO hilarious! “Parks and Rec” comes in a close second (if not equal) – the show speaks to my heart. Ron Swanson is my favorite television character...he gets paid to do nothing...that’s the dream or maybe why the government is so inefficient.
6. What are three places you enjoy visiting in Oakland?
I like going to cafes or small coffee shops, because they’re more homey and inviting. It’s easy to sit down and chill.
In Alameda there’s this restaurant called Lola’s Chicken Shack…my friends and I like to grab food from there and go to beach and chill. Also going to Sushi House with friends is one of my favorite places to eat sushi.
When I had time, I loved going to SF to photograph buildings and the local flora/fauna. Perhaps I can go back to this over the summer when I’m officially done with high school!
7. Who are your top music artists?
Bazzi: he’s a solo artist and love how he sings about love;
Post Malone: he’s super chill and his songs are pretty realistic;
For some major throwback, The Beatles: I grew up with them because my Dad loves the Beatles…my favorite song is “Hey Jude”;
Beethoven: appreciate his way of music…it’s peaceful and calming.
8. Who do you follow on insta?
I follow people/media outlets like: Teen Vogue, because they’ve started focusing on world problems and awareness around that and various make-up artists.
9. Where’d you grow up? What do you like about Oakland?
Grew up in Oakland, specifically the Dimond District. St. Jarlath (Roman-Catholic) Church was and is a huge part of my life. At first I really hated going to church because everything revolved around the church, but now I really appreciate it.
I like the diversity in Oakland and how our neighborhoods are pretty well blended. When I leave Oakland, I notice how different people interact with each other and how many times people will only interact with people within their own communities, limiting the opportunity for us to learn about other cultures and ways of thinking.
10. What’s something you’d like to see change in Oakland? What do you want your contribution to that change to be?
A big problem in Oakland is people experiencing homelessness. Everywhere you go you see them…under the bridge, by Lake Merritt, by the expressway, and downtown.
Homelessness is a really hard thing to solve by just one person. But providing shelters and food would be a really good start. Have more accessible centers where people experiencing homelessness can go to so they can get their lives back on track.
Over the holidays, my church provides meals for those experiencing homelessness and that’s one way I’ve been helping out. It’s special and humbling to be able to connect with those experiencing homelessness and being able to witness what they’ve experienced.
11. What do you appreciate about today’s technology?
The ever connected network. You can literally text, message, or call someone and they will immediately get your message. You can immediately record problems you see on the streets and share it with the world. Having a phone that allows you to do all of this, speeds up the process for information sharing.
12. What type of technology do you wish you had, but hasn’t been invented yet?
Something that allows you to read minds. Inserting a chip in the brain and projecting it…so when you’re thinking about something and can’t articulate it, you can then show it so others understand. Though, this would have to be a highly monitored piece of technology and not available to just anyone.
Or being able to to have a photographic memory because, in my opinion, life would be easier when we can remember the more necessary things in our daily lives.
13. What would be your dream job? What do you want to be when you grow up?
I want to go into the Computer Science field and I want to be coding for web development or would want to work on the math side of the field. Still deciding which of these two I want to pursue.
I was accepted into 11 colleges and finally made the really hard decision of where to go…University of Oregon, which I’m really excited to be attending...go Ducks!
Photography by Christine Cueto.
Hack the Hood Blog
News items and musings on tech inclusion, youth development, buying local and more.