As a child, when Tessy Pumaccahua and her mother came to the United States
from Peru, she never imagined going to college. She and her mother lived in poverty,
were homeless for a while, and sold cakes outside a local church to make ends meet.
Today, Tessy is a graduate student at California State University, San Bernardino
in the psychology master's program and is researching treatment for ADHD. She has served
as a summer intern at the Harvard Medical School and at UCLA and is a Ronald E. McNair
Scholar, and a Minority Access to Research and Research in Minority Institutes Scholar.
She was awarded the Outstanding Undergraduate Research Award, and received the Sally
Casanova California Predoctoral Fellowship.
In 2010, Tessy was elected president of the CSUSB chapter of
Psi Psi Chi, the national honor society in psychology. She has
volunteered as a crisis counselor, a youth mentor and behavioral
interventionist in the Inland Empire.
Tessy plans to obtain a doctoral degree with the goal of becoming a
professor of psychology.