Author Archives: Estefany M Gonzaga

About Estefany M Gonzaga

First Gen | Student Parent | Digital Humanities & Pedagogy Graduate Student | Higher Education Professional Talks about #graphicdesign, #peermentorship, #studentsuccess, #digitallearning, and #professionaldevelopment Estefany Marlen Gonzaga is the Program Coordinator for LaGuardia’s Student Success Mentor (SSM) Program. In this role, she recruits, trains, and guides student leaders who mentor and support new-to-college students in the discipline-specific First-Year Seminar Studio Hour Lab. Having been a mentee and mentor herself, Estefany understands the value and impact of peer mentorship and leverages these experiences in her work with SSMs. Throughout her ten years in CUNY, she has listened to the reasons New Majority students go to college and captured their stories in the video “I am going to college because…” referenced in Cathy N. Davidson’s book The New Education. Estefany holds an Associate of Science in Business Administration from LaGuardia Community College and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Communication (specialization in Graphic Communication) from Baruch College. In the Fall of 2022, she will continue her studies at the CUNY Graduate Center to pursue a Master of Arts in Digital Humanities, Digital Pedagogy.

Estefany’s Biography

Estefany Marlen Gonzaga was born in Nezahualcoyotl, Mexico, and raised in Queens, New York. She is the program coordinator of the Student Success Mentor (SSM) Program at LaGuardia Community College (LaGCC). She began her academic career at LAGCC in 2014.   In the Fall of 2022, Estefany became a  student in the Digital Humanities program at the CUNY Graduate Center. As coordinator of the SSM program, she recruits, trains, and guides peer mentors to support First Year students taking the First Year Seminar Studio Hour. During the Studio Hour, SSMs mentor and teach students how to create an ePortfolio. Her research interest includes Student Success, Peer Mentorship, digital learning, and technology in the classroom.

She joined the More Than Surviving Team and is excited to learn and support the creation of an archive of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. Her role in the project is Community Outreach Coordinator – (Online Outreach and Social Media Strategy and her secondary roles are UX Designer and Researcher.

Personal Journal Week 2

Week 2

It was great to meet with my team during class. We were able to think further think  about our roles and organization process. I am thankful that Majal provide a supplemental  reading titled Indian Slavery in Colonial America by Allen Gallay.  It helped us understand the colonial events and how the Wampanoag tribe were affected.

On Sunday, the team and I met to further discuss our proposal and the community agreements. I think we all have a better understanding of how this project will be planned until for the remainder of the semester.

One question I keep coming back to is how do we make sure that the archive doesn’t disappear in years to come. I think this project is important. From my last course, I remember clicking on DH projects and some would not work. So, hopefully with our team we can come to a solution.

I officially got accepted to participate in the Carnegie Seminar on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: Decolonizing the Humanities. I am excited to learn how I can integrate what I learn in my project and also in the seminar.




Estefany’s Skill Set

Hello everyone!

It was great to read everyone’s skill set! I hope my skill set will be of some value to the class.  I’ve worked in administrative settings, higher education,  mentorship, and as a graphic designer for various projects. My undergrad was in Business Administration & Communication and Graphic Communication.  Here is a link to my LinkedIn to see sample work under projects:

My skills sets are the following:


Multimedia Designer (graphic design, photography, website) 

Over the years, I have worked on several different projects, whether as a freelance or as part of work.  I designed and created websites, flyers, logos, videos, book covers, and booklets among several different projects on different mediums. I think I can turn an idea into something visual.

Event/Training/Professional Development  Planning and Execution 

As a coordinator, I’ve planned several engaging events, training sessions, and professional development sessions alongside my colleague (virtual and in-person).

Facilitator/Public Speaking 

In the last almost 9 years, I’ve facilitated several meetings, events, training, and professional developments.  I am comfortable speaking in public (sometimes I still get nervous!)

Social Media

I’ve managed two business social media accounts.  I’ve created engaging content for the audience for each audience.


Writing – I don’t like to write.  I feel like I can’t articulate my ideas in writing as I have them in my head.  I know I have great ideas, but I struggle with writing.  I think it’s a trauma I must learn to overcome.


I’ve taken courses in HTML & CSS but I don’t really practice therefore I don’t remember.


I need for support in understanding and analyzing data.



First-generation college students are the first in their families to go to college. Since they are the first in their families, they are often left to figure out the complicated higher education system in the United States of America on their own. Without proper guidance, students can feel overwhelmed by filling out complex applications such as the FASFA and scholarship application and, among other unfamiliar tasks, to enroll and stay in college.  They need help understanding college 101 terminology such as prerequisites, capstone, or hybrid. A lack of understanding of Student Success strategies such as time management, Habits of Mind, or navigating several digital tools can be detrimental to their college success. Because of such complicated and unfamiliar higher education territory, students can feel alone and as if they don’t belong in an institution of higher learning. They may also be unfamiliar with the college resources available, such as the Wellness Center, Tutoring Services, Offices of Accessibility, or the Ombudsman Office.  This can cause students to get stressed, have anxiety, and, unfortunately, drop out of college.

Peer Mentorship via Social Media digital project aims to provide peer mentorship through platforms where students would most effectively receive information, such as social media platforms like Instagram or Tic Tok. This content would be created and curated by a team of mentorship experts, mentors, and mentees. The goal is for First Generation students to learn and be prepared to succeed in college regardless of the hurdles they may face.

Google Slides:  

Click Here to learn more: