Dr. Trista Beard, NTSAF Director
Dr. Beard’s responsibilities include program design and vision, long-term strategic planning with the Board, building partnerships to empower students, and promoting the Fund across USC, across Los Angeles, and nationally, as a unique model of a student-funded, student-governed scholarship opportunity. Dr. Beard is a first-generation college student from a working class rural town. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Rochester, a Master’s from Simmons College in Boston, and her Doctorate in Education from USC. After teaching English in Japan, she began working at USC in study abroad programs where she became an expert on global learning and international programs. Her research interests in higher education focus on first-generation college students, social capital exchange, persistence, and the development of success models.
Carina Gonzalez, Assistant Director
Carina is proud to work with the resilient and talented Topping Scholars & Fellows. Her advising style consists of holistic and strengths based advising. As a first-generation college student, she understands the importance of having a support system and mentors in order to be successful in college. Carina earned her Bachelor of Science in Criminology from the University of La Verne and her Master of Education in Educational Counseling from the University of Southern California. Her mission in life has always been to help others and make a positive change in someone’s life. It is this mission that drives Carina’s passion for helping students to succeed in achieving their academic and career goals. Her experience in higher education includes student advising, leadership development, programming, and teaching a values course.
Hannah Franco, Governing Board Chair 2021-2022
Hannah Franco is a senior studying Public Policy with minors in Behavioral Economics and Spanish. She is also beginning her first year as a progressive MPP student at Price. From teenage parents, from immigrants, from shoemakers and fieldworkers, Hannah is fueled by the generations of sacrifice and ambition that came before her. She grew up with the support of a village and is committed to serving the communities that shaped her. As Governing Board Chair, Hannah will apply her academic, professional, and personal experiences in policy and advocacy to lead the Board and serve NTSAF students.
Kim Vasadre, Graduate Assistant/Program Coordinator
Kim Vasadre is a current graduate student at the USC Rossier School of Education. She earned her B.A. in Human Development from UC San Diego. Kim is a proud first-generation college student and immigrant from the Philippines. As a product of the TRIO programs (Educational Talent Search and Student Support Services), Kim understands the importance of building and being a part of a supportive community. Kim is passionate about assisting first-generation students navigate higher education, building meaningful relationships, and empowering students to attain their personal and educational goals.
Alain Joachin, Graduate Assistant/Outreach Coordinator
Alain Joachin is a current graduate student at the USC Rossier School of Education. He started his journey in higher education at Norco Community College where he went on to transfer to UC San Diego majoring in (B.A.) Sociocultural Anthropology. Alain is the son of Haitian immigrants and a first-generation transfer student whose growing passion for student success led him to focus on empowering students to advocate for their needs. He has worked in various positions within EOP&S, Admissions, Summer Bridge, and Residential Life. Motivated by both his lived and learned experiences, he is eager to build purposeful connections in hopes of providing necessary resources for first-generation college students.