"The Peer Advisors have been through the SJSU system. They have a first hand expereince in navigating this campus."

Survival at SJSU requires more than academic skills: It requires motivation as well as a commitment to learning. Our advising staff provides support in clarifying goals and finding solutions to personal concerns. We work cooperatively with other campus services to help students obtain information about requirements, course selection, financial aid, career planning, and other resources. Our advising services also include:

  • Major/Career exploration
  • Scheduling classes
  • Student advocacy
  • Scholarship Search
  • Assistance with resume writing
  • Support in finding solutions to personal concerns and academic problems for all ASPIRE students
  • Making appropriate referrals to other SJSU resources
  • One-on-one sessions with an advisor; 1 hour appointments; three times per semester or as needed for all ASPIRE students.
  • Information on campus resources, policies and procedures for all ASPIRE students.

Peer Advising

The ASPIRE Peer Advising component is among the most significant pieces of the program. Peer Advisors are service minded, upper division and graduate students who play a key role in assisting ASPIRE participants become acclimated to the campus and the demands of the collegiate life. The Peer Advisors assist through one-on-one and group meetings with their advisees. They are an important on-campus resource for ASPIRE students and work as vital members of the program counseling team.


Meet our Advisors!






Jose Manzo

Jose Manzo

Jose was born and raised in Humboldt County six hours north of San Jose.  He recently graduated this past spring 2017 from San Jose State University (SJSU) with a BA in Psychology and minor in Kinesiology.  Immediately following graduation, he jumped right into the Counselor Education Graduate Program at SJSU to pursue his passion of serving students along their educational journey.  During his undergraduate experience, Jose worked with the EOP program at SJSU as a Peer Mentor and Resident Assistant helping fellow first-generation and low-income students.  In his free time, he enjoys watching and playing sports, as well as traveling to his parent’s roots in Michoacán, Mexico.  He is ecstatic to continue working with first-generation students in the ASPIRE community and looking forward to help you in any way he can on your journey at SJSU.

His favorite quote is:

“It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us, our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” – Marianne Williamson




Valerie Lamb

Valerie Lamb

Valerie is a first generation college student. She recently graduated in June 2015 from California State University, East Bay with my BA in Sociology and a minor in Psychology. Currently, she is in the Counseling Education Graduate Program at San Jose State University studying to become an academic counselor in order to help students achieve their educational goals. Aside from her education, she has a handsome, funny and artistic 5 year old son named Dylan. Since her schedule is very busy, time management is one of the keys to her success since she is juggling work, school, and being a mom. Now that you know a little bit about her, she is very excited to get to know you as well. She is thrilled to be a part of the ASPIRE program and to be a part of your educational success at San Jose State. 


Diana Castro



Diana Castro is a native from San Mateo. Where she studied at College of San Mateo and actively participated in EOPS as a student Peer Mentor, who graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Liberal Studies and Social Science. As a first generation Latina, Diana has worked part time while attending college as a full time student to support her family financially, giving her a strong understanding of how to balance the rigors of school and personal life. From CSM to Notre Dame de Namur University (NDNU), Diana has successfully graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. Since then, she has stayed connected in her community actively working in the education field and currently attending graduate school to obtain a Master’s Degree in  Education with a concentration in Counseling and Student Personnel.