Sierra College student Maya Moseley had no idea that her community college journey would end with a Yale acceptance. But let’s rewind— how did she end up there? Moseley started her journey at Sierra College by getting involved with as much as she could on campus right away. She served on Sierra’s Associated Students of Sierra College (ASSC) as a student senator in the fall of 2021, working her way up to ASSC Executive Vice President in the spring of 2022. During this period, she was able to work closely with the student trustee at the time, Ruby Chavez DeChavez. Observing what DeChavez was able to do and accomplish on campus made Moseley want to apply to be a student trustee herself. She encourages aspiring student trustees to be involved with student government before running- there were 3 candidates this year!
“As a student trustee, you get to be in touch with virtually everyone on campus,” she said. “From fellow members of the student senate to the dean of equity and college president.”
Moseley’s relationships allowed her to be able to develop programs that helped suit student needs and make positive changes on campus. Her proudest moment was starting a Business Clothing Closet on campus that coordinated with the college’s Basic Needs Center. This closet provides students with business attire for professional situations like, such as interviews.
Aside from making a difference on the ground at Sierra, Moseley also enjoyed attending different events and networking with fellow student trustees. Events like including the Community College League of California’s Student Trustees Workshop allowed her to widen her worldview and learn how to become a mediator in times of conflict.
“I went to a lot of events,” she said. “The Student Trustee Workshop was great, Student Senate for California Community Colleges (SSCCC), an advocacy conference in Washington, D.C., lobby day (with help from Nune), and Vet Day.”
Student trustee events led her to meet Nune Garipian, the League’s Senior Policy Advocate, and Yale community college transfer.
Before meeting Garipian, Moseley was not aware that Yale accepted transfers from the community college system. Following hearing Garipian speak at the Student Trustees Workshop in August 2022, Moseley did further research and found an article about Garipian's transfer experience and decided to look into it for herself. After deciding to apply, she was shocked to learn that she’d been accepted. Of all transfer students that apply to Yale each year, only one percent are accepted.
Moseley graduated from Sierra College in May 2023 with associate degrees in natural sciences, psychology, women’s studies, and social & behavioral sciences. She plans to major in Psychology at Yale.
“I’ve had the honor to get to know and be in awe of so many of my peers at Sierra College,” said Moseley. “As they intern everywhere from the Capitol to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and go on to transfer to some of the most renowned institutions in the world, including Dartmouth and UC Berkeley, I am reminded of how community college changes lives. I’m so excited for what the future holds at Yale, and I owe it to community college for helping me get here.”