Victoria Ordaz Garcia
Coordinator, Undocumented Student Services
Born in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, Victoria Ordaz Garcia (She/her/Ella) is the proud daughter of Zapoteco farmworkers, she migrated to the Central Valley at the age of 6. Victoria graduated as a first-generation, undocumented student from California State University Monterey Bay with a B.S. in Molecular Biology. Victoria takes pride in being Oaxaqueña and serves her community by being part of Oaxaqueño Youth Empowerment, which campaigns to obtain support and success for Oaxaqueño youth in higher education. She is also a member of United We Dream (UWD). She can proudly say that her participation in these diverse organizations has ignited her passion for social justice.
Currently, Ms. Victoria serves as the Program Coordinator of the Undocumented Student Services Program within the Calvin E. Bright Success Center at UC Merced. In her role, she works with undergraduate and graduates undocumented students to increase awareness, access, and equity to address the needs of students impacted by immigration and higher education policies.
Victoria loves to travel, try new foods, hike, have coffee, and read.
Quote: "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou
Paloma Andrea Contreras
Immigration Attorney, UCIMM
Paloma is the immigration attorney serving the UC Merced community. Paloma was raised in Arvin, California, a small agricultural town near Bakersfield. Paloma and her older sister were raised by their single mom and they saw her struggle to financially provide for them. Paloma’s background and experiences motivated her from a young age to pursue higher education so she could one day retire her mom and help others in her community prosper and excel. This dream took Paloma to UC San Diego where she majored in Human Development, and later to the Nebraska College of Law where she obtained her J.D. In her free time, Paloma loves going to live music and theater events, all things Taylor Swift, cooking, traveling, and trying the latest Starbucks drink.