Linda Ramos is the Higher Education Program Manager at John Burton Advocates for Youth where she works to enhance opportunities for cross systems collaboration and implement systems change strategies to increase college access, retention, and completion for current and former foster youth and students facing financial insecurity. Throughout her career, she has worked to support college access for all students with a special focus on low-income, first-generation students and former foster youth. Her passion for this work derives from Linda’s lived experience as a first-generation student and five years of working as an educator in the public school system.
After leaving the classroom, she advocated for the Spanish-speaking community during her tenure as Executive Director of El Centro de Acción Social, a grassroots community-based agency located in Pasadena, CA. It was here where she first became aware of the educational needs within the foster youth community. She transitioned to United Friends of the Children (UFC) in 2005 to support the growth of their education programs (College Readiness and College Sponsorship) which sought to increase high school and college completion rates and college access among foster youth in Los Angeles County. Most recently, Linda worked at Cerritos College where she coordinated the Leaders Involved in Creating Change (LINC) foster youth support program to enhance program design and implementation. Linda has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and American Studies from Stanford University, a Master’s in Education (w/BCLAD Secondary Credential) from UC Santa Cruz and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from CSU Long Beach.