Rainbow Graduation

Rainbow Squares with graduation hat Rainbow Grads cutting a cake


12th Annual *Virtual* Rainbow Graduation



Portrait of Aileen Johnson


Cheers to the Queers!

Aileen Johnson (they, them, theirs; she, her, hers)

Fall 2019
B.A. Communication Studies
2018 & 2019 Peers in PRIDE Mentor

Thank you to the queer community at SJSU. Y’all provided such a safe space for me to be myself and I’m grateful for getting to learn about y’all because it taught me a lot about myself along the way. Special shoutout to the queer staff that’ve supported and inspired me in every way. I can’t wait to see what we will do next! #QueerTakeover



Portrait of Angela Marie Adelle Santos Pinasco

Angela Marie Adelle Santos Pinasco (she, her, hers)

Spring 2020
B.S. Hospitality, Tourism, and Event Management




Brianna Lyon (she, her, hers)

Spring 2020
BS in Economics
Minor Political Science



Isabel Montano Plantillas (she, her, hers)

Spring 2020
B.A. Child and Adolescent Development



Portrait of Margarita Figueroa

Margarita Figueroa (she, her, hers)

Spring 2020
B.S. in Justice Studies-Criminology; B.A. in Political Science
Summa Cum Laude
2019 Peers in PRIDE Mentor

Thank you to those who supported me and brought me joy over these past few years!


Stephanie Greco (she, her, hers)

Fall 2020
B.S. Applied Mathematics



Shawn Jones-Trammell (they, them, theirs)

Fall 2019
B.F.A in Digital Media Art
2019 Peers in PRIDE Mentor


11 years

Violet Eldridge (she, her, hers)

Spring 2020
B.S. in Computer Science
Dean's Scholar
2019 Peers in PRIDE Mentor

I deeply appreciate all the love, support, and respect that the PRIDE Center has offered and enabled for me and everyone who visits. In an attempt to reciprocate just a fraction of what the center did for me, I became a PIP Mentor at the tail end of my 11 years at SJSU.

Thank you to Bonnie and Em for helping me get out of my difficult living situation at the end of 2018 and into a better one, and for all the wonderful friendships that resulted. Thank you to Bonnie for being supportive and available with open arms both times when I needed support regarding gender (both when I transitioned from high school to university in Fall 2009 and again when I came back out after a 5-year gender denial in November 2018) and needed someone to talk to and didn't know who else to talk to. Thank you to everyone who reached out to me for support and made me feel needed and appreciated. Thank you to everyone who made me feel like I belonged somewhere. Thank you to those who remembered me after a multi-year hiatus from the center.

Thank you to my mom and brother for supporting me emotionally. Thank you to my dad for supporting me financially. Thank you to Peter and Bernard for giving me a chance, which ultimately led to me finding my life passions in computers, cybersecurity, and digital privacy.

Thank you to CAPS for offering counseling services, including psychological counseling, crisis counseling, and educational counseling.

Thank you to Jimma Cortes for helping me write my personal statements for withdrawing Fall 2013 and applying to the Computer Science major. Thank you to Cindy Kato for accepting my withdrawal personal statement for Fall 2013, and to the CS department for subsequently accepting me into the CS major.

Thank you to Dr. Wei-Chien Lee, Bonnie Sugiyama, and everyone else who taught Mental Health First Aid Training (MHFA), and to everyone who took it.

Thank you to Bonnie Sugiyama and Doctor Stephanie Preston for putting on the PIP program, and thank you to the PIP Mentors and Mentees for participating in PIP.

Thank you to Professor Mark Stamp for my two favorite classes at SJSU, Information Security and Machine Learning with Applications in Information Security, and for helping me find and fuel my passions for cybersecurity and digital privacy.

Thank you to Rob Bruce for giving me a place to study, and all the connection and great chats we had.
Thank you to Maxine Shao and Alev Dietrich for honest personal connection.

Thank you to Kodama Sensei for taking a chance on me to let me take Japanese Ideography and Calligraphy when I had only taken the prerequisite of the prerequisite and not yet the direct prerequisite.
Thank you to Doctor Suneuy Kim for accepting me into NoSQL.

Thank you to Ben Reed for teaching Operating Systems with passion.
Thank you to Rula Khayrallah for accepting the call to come to SJSU to teach Introduction to Artificial Intelligence in Spring 2016.
Thank you to Doctor Olga Kovaleva for all the help with mathematical proofs during office hours.
Thank you to Doctor Kerr and Professor Stone for caring about the health of students beyond the basics of the course material.
Thank you to Romey Sabalius for teaching fun German classes.
Thank you to Professor Gallardo for teaching Doing Gender with Buffy and WOMS101.
Thank you to Fabio Di Troia for teaching Computer Architecture in just the right level of detail.




Ai Nakamura holding up rainbow wings.

Accolades from Alum Ai Nakamura to all the graduates!

You've beaten every single thing that life has thrown at you--unsupportive family, tough classes, mental health and it's surrounding stigma, unreasonable professors, society as a whole--you've beaten them all, even in the middle of all of this going on. I'm so freaking proud of you, and so self assured, because I know that if you can beat all of this, there isn't anything you can't beat. Congratulations graduate, you made it <3