El Nido alumna, Kenia Pech, is the perfect example of “paying it forward.” As a teen parent in high school, Kenia was referred to El Nido Family Centers, where she received the constant support and counseling that enabled her to graduate near the top of her class. After enrolling at Cal State Long Beach, Kenia was awarded El Nido’s Payson Wolff Memorial Scholarship, and continued as an El Nido scholarship recipient for 6 years, until she received her Bachelor’s degree in Biology in 2015.
Kenia stated “El Nido believed in my ability to succeed, and has always supported me throughout my academic life.”
After graduation, Kenia was hired as a part-time associate at Kite Pharma, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company engaged in the development of novel cancer immunotherapy products.
Through her eagerness to learn, she quickly became a full-time Quality Control Associate. Her goal is to save lives by being part of a team that finds a cure for cancer, a disease that killed both of her grandparents.
Kenia credits El Nido and others for her transition from being saved to saving others. “El Nido has made this journey possible and has encouraged me to never give up on my dreams,” she exclaimed.
Kenia’s eight-year-old son was recently accepted into the Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) Program. She takes him to work as often as she can, and always takes photos at work to show him. He says he wants to be a scientist “just like mom.”