Home » Get Involved » Loretto Justice Fellowship » Loretto Justice Fellows

Loretto Justice Fellows

Meet our 2023/2024 Loretto Justice Fellows!

Karemy Cruz

BSW student | Loretto Justice Fellow at Center Against Sexual and Family Violence

I am a 21-year-old current student in the Bachelor’s of Social Work program at UTEP. One of my goals is to finish my Bachelor’s degree and continue with my Master’s to hopefully one day open my place to help as many people as possible. I describe myself as a dedicated and ambitious person, someone who likes to give their best and constantly sets goals to strive and become a better person. The Loretto Justice Fellowship demonstrates the importance of networking and support in the community. I’m excited to be part of the Fellowship experience, as I know this experience will be unforgettable and I’ll be gaining knowledge that will be used forever.

Larissa Meza

MSW student | Loretto Justice Fellow – Social Work at Diocesan Migrant and Refugee Services

I consider myself a border girl, traveling back and forth from El Paso and Ciudad Juárez has kept me close to the border community.  Pursuing my Master’s Degree in Social Work is the next step in my career. I feel honored to be accepted in the Loretto Community Fellowship Program for the year of 2023-2024. I am sure this experience will enrich me in learning more about my community and reaching resources to every person in need.

Jessica Nungaray Garcia

BSW student | Loretto Justice Fellow at Villa Maria

I am a Junior student in the Bachelor of Social Work Honors Program, which will help me graduate with three master-level courses and be part of the Masters of Social Work Program. Growing up, I never imagined all the opportunities I have been offered regarding my education, I am blessed and grateful. I was raised in Guadalajara, a city in the south of Mexico, and immigrated to El Paso in 2015. Around that time, I faced some family issues, and a social worker provided my family with multiple resources to help us succeed. Due to her impact on my life, I decided to pursue a career in Social Work. I want to become an advocate for the Latino community, women, and families. Also, promote equality, inclusion, and justice. In the future, I would like to become a licensed social worker and work in the border region. What excites me about being a part of the 23/24 Loretto Fellowship experience is collaborating with other fellows and professionals on this journey. I am excited about all the learning I will get and sharing my insight on different topics that could help others. I am very motivated and look forward to working hard, enjoying this experience and being a part of community life.

Arantza Soto de Jesus

Law School Preparation Institute Student | Loretto Justice Fellow – Legal Assistant at Diocesan Migrant and Refugee Services

I am 20 years old and I’m a sophomore at UTEP. I was raised in Mexico and moved to El Paso to get my Bachelors in Political Science with a Minor in Women and Gender Studies. My plan for the future is to go to law school and become an immigration attorney.

Anabel Theriault

BSW student | Loretto Justice Fellow at Reynolds Home

As a first-generation college student pursuing my passion for social work and social justice, I am excited to begin this journey as a Loretto Justice Fellow for 2023/2024. As an immigrant, I have witnessed the challenges marginalized communities face, which fueled my determination to make a positive impact in my community. As a non-traditional student, I bring a wealth of life experience to my studies, my background has cultivated my understanding of intersectionality and the dynamics in social justice issues. I am an active board member of the Student Association of Social Work, I have volunteered at local nonprofits and am eager to serve my community further and provide support to underserved populations. The opportunity Loretto Fellowship is offering is invaluable, and I can’t wait to see the different opportunities for community life and advocacy we will create.

Brenda Varela

MSW student | Loretto Justice Fellow at Ciudad Nueva

Throughout the last few years, I have learned a lot at school and have gotten the opportunity to not only put what I’ve learned to practice, but to also learn more through experience. There’s so many things that excite me about being part of the Loretto Justice Fellowship experience. I believe that this is an incredible opportunity to contribute to positive change in my city. This will help me later to have more skills to work towards policy change and to create a greater chance of equity and inclusion in El Paso or Texas in general. I have a passion for social justice and what a social worker can do at different levels to help people.

Alicia Villarreal

MSW student | Loretto Justice Fellow at Las Americas Immigrant Advocacy Center 

I am passionate about humanitarian work with diverse populations, especially in the immigration field. I graduated from New Mexico State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. I am a fronteriza, born in El Paso TX, and raised between Ciudad Juarez and Chaparral, NM. I believe my personal and professional values align with the work the Loretto Justice Fellowship does with communities. I am interested in the comprehensive approach that the Loretto Justice Fellowship follows and the collaboration involving anti-racist practices, education, earth conservation, inclusivity, and overall service to marginalized groups and individuals. I am excited to work with this wonderful team and looking forward to serving the community, to nurture and instill social justice, equity, and hope.