Introducing our fall 2019 interns!

Our work wouldn’t be possible without our large and supportive community, from our volunteers to our staff to our community partners to — you guessed it — our interns! Every semester, we welcome a cohort of interns, all of whom provide invaluable support to our staff and students across our programs. We are so thankful to have such a wonderful group this fall, and we are so excited to introduce you to them!

If you see any of these smiling faces in one of our programs, make sure to say hi!


Camila Ceja

Camila was born and raised in Richmond, California. Currently, she is a second year student at UC Berkeley, where she is majoring in comparative literature and ethnic studies. In her free time, Camila loves to go to concerts, eat tacos, and explore art museums. She loves spending time with family, friends, and her two puppies! She is excited to work with 826 Valencia and bring her jokes and laughs to everyone there.




Tommy Emick

Tommy was born and raised in San Bernardino County in Southern California. He studied English Literature and Political Science at UC Berkeley and is currently studying Teaching for Secondary English at the University of Southern California. He loves all forms of pop culture and literature but has a  particular soft spot for punk music, mind-bending thrillers and horror movies, and Young Adult/coming-of-age literature. He loves 826 Valencia and is absolutely excited to support students in crafting and honing their written and verbal voices for personal and political use.



Justin Hung

Justin was born in Hong Kong and raised in the Philippines, and has always felt a stronger connection to his Filipino roots. He is one of this year’s Chan Fellows, and is in the final year of his undergraduate program in Hong Kong, where he’s majoring in history. In his free time, he enjoys travelling, being outdoors, trying different kinds of food, and meeting different people! He is a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley doing research about equal education access and minority rights, and in the future hopes to become a professor so that he can share his experience and knowledge with future generations. He is very excited to be here at 826 Valencia helping students to explore their creativity through writing!


Jiaen Liang

Jiaen is a second-year graduate student studying Social Work at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China. Her primary concerns are poverty and gender issues. Jiaen believes that through working with 826 Valencia in the U.S. she can gain a deeper understanding of the social services systems here. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, camping, reading, eating delicious foods, and connecting with friends.




Stephannie Linares

Stephannie was born and raised in the city of Santa Ana, El Salvador. She spent some time in Maryland and moved to California a while ago. She is a freshman at Contra Costa College where she is preparing to be a paralegal and transfer to university to become a lawyer. She loves food and enjoys nature. In her free time Stephannie enjoys going for walks on the beach and to the movie theater. She loves to spend time at 826 Valencia getting to know all the young writers and listening to their great ideas.




Anuka Mohanpuhr

Anuka Mohanpuhr is a senior at Berkeley High School. She has been tutoring at 826 Valencia since her freshman year and has enjoyed sharing her creativity and love for writing with students from San Francisco. When she’s not tutoring, she serves as the Communications Director for the California Association of Student Councils and as the news editor of the Berkeley High student newspaper, The Berkeley High Jacket. She also likes spending time outdoors, and hopes to visit all U.S. national parks one day. She is very excited to be working at 826 as an intern this fall!



Nicolette Ragone

Niki was born and raised in Southern California, but she loves the Bay Area just as much. She is currently majoring in global studies and minoring in Spanish at UC Berkeley. Niki found 826 through her university and joined because of her passion for working with students and how much she can learn from them. Her passion for education came from having inspiring teachers, who fostered her love of learning to a point that she wants to be a teacher herself. She is excited to be a new addition to 826 assisting field trips! In her spare time, Niki likes to watch dog videos, listen to music, and explore the Bay Area with her friends.



Nina Tanujaya

Nina was born and raised in San Francisco’s Outer Sunset. She recently graduated from Bard College with a degree in sociology and asian studies and has since moved back to the Bay Area, which will always have her heart. She has been passionate about social activism and community issues since a young age, and hopes to dedicate her career to nonprofit work serving community needs. She is excited to grow in her ability to be a skilled and effective educator with 826 Valencia. Her most recent favorite book is Free Food for Millionaires by Min Jin Lee.




Megan Whitney

Megan is a NorCal native who is slooowwllly becoming a SoCal local as she begins her junior year at Westmont College in Santa Barbara. This semester she is living, working, studying, concert-going, and coffee-drinking her way through San Francisco (arguably the best city on the west coast). After becoming a world traveller this summer by going to five countries in three months, she is happy to be returning to her California roots (for now). She is passionate about social justice, music, and witnessing people work together. Megan is eager to learn from all the students that come through 826 Valencia, and to help them hear and see how powerful their own voices are.



Melia Zaballos

Melia was born in Walnut Creek, California, though grew up in a small town outside of Sacramento. She’s currently a sophomore at San Francisco State University, with a major in Business Management and minor in Holistic Health. Melia chose to become an intern at 826 because she’s passionate about writing, loves to help others with their writing, and enjoys reading all the wonderful ideas others come up with. Outside of 826, Melia enjoys writing and playing music on her guitar, exploring the city, and cooking.