Our Alumni

LA’s BEST alumni are Harvard graduates from East LA, police officers from North Hills, attorneys from Sylmar, MIT students from Boyle Heights, LA’s BEST staff from Watts and success stories across Los Angeles and the country.

Evaluations of our program showed us that our students are 20% less likely to drop out of school and 30% less likely to commit juvenile crime. Our alumni are living proof of that success. Read some of their stories here or submit your own with your contact information.



“LA's BEST was a lifesaver for my family. My siblings and I got help with math and especially English which is why my parents enrolled us in the program. It provided me with the access to extracurricular activities that I would have otherwise never had. Knowing the impact that LA’s BEST had on my life, from helping me to make friends and feeling like I was a part of a family to boosting my confidence which allowed me to go on to have leadership roles and participate in dance, I made the decision to go into education. Some of my current students are in LA’s BEST and I tell them all the time about my experiences in it.” — Mirla U., LA’s BEST student at Hillside in 1990, Harvard graduate, LMU M.A. Education, current Teach for America staff member

“I was a new immigrant from Mexico. My 3rd grade teacher separated me from the other students. It was through LA's BEST that I made friends and stared to learn English. They helped me with homework since I did not have that type of support at home. Last year, I became the first undocumented student at UCLA School of Law. It is with great optimism that I face this new challenge, after all it was not to my credit alone, but to the credit of all those who helped, supported, and encouraged me to succeed.” —L.P., LA's BEST student at Langdon Elementary in 1990, current student at UCLA School of Law, UCLA undergrad

“LA's BEST was a home away from home. My parents worked late until 6 p.m. so instead of walking home I went to LA's BEST. I stayed in LA's BEST even when my mom got off work earlier once I was in 5th grade. I later went back to LA's BEST to volunteer and help students with math because I knew how important it was to have that extra help.” —Morris V., LA's BEST student at Leo Politi Elementary in 1998, current undergraduate student at MIT, former LA's BEST high school volunteer

“LA's BEST did a great job allowing me, a kid that was full of energy and curiosity, to try many new things that I may not have otherwise. From sports to plays and field trips, I had some of the best times of my childhood while enrolled in LA's BEST.” —Manfred D., LA's BEST student at Selma Elementary in 1991, current undergraduate student at UCLA

“I remember when I was in LA's BEST, it was the first time I was ever introduced to art which is what I'm now pursuing as a career.” —Wai L., LA's BEST student at Ann Street Elementary in 1998, current undergraduate student at CSU Northridge

“Before I joined the program, my grades were very low. I was not completing my homework and was always getting in trouble. Then when I joined LA's BEST I started completing my homework and working on the issues I had. I got involved in trying out for sports and trying to do my best. Since then I have worked a lot on giving back to my elementary school...” —Jose G., LA's BEST student at 68th in 1998, former LA's BEST High School worker

“As an alumnus of one of the first LA's BEST programs, during high school I was inspired to become a volunteer of the program that I was part of as a child. I was then hired and given the opportunity to be a student worker when I was in high school. I thank LA's BEST for always allowing me to grow as a student and an adult by enhancing my experience with children as I was then driven to become a special education teacher” —Jane R., LA's BEST student at Hillside Elementary in 1990, current student at CSU Los Angeles completing credential program, CSU Dominguez Hills BA & MA, Special Education, current Special Education teacher

“They [LA's BEST] don't just give you a door or window to go through... they knock down the wall for you.” —Tiffanie Anderson, LA's BEST student at Hart Street Elementary, currently an actress and performing artist