Cynthia is a bilingual clinical psychologist. She began her professional life in 1989 working in Costa Rica in the mental health field with cancer patients, their families and caregivers, helping them through burnout and post-traumatic stress disorder. She immigrated to the United States 10 years ago and is now a proud U.S. citizen. Throughout her career, Cynthia has believed in prevention rather than remediation, and she views investing in education as the ultimate power tool to achieve solid and sustainable change.
Following her passion for community growth, Cynthia has divided her time between working in her psychology practice and working at Jeffco Schools as the bridge between the community and the activity inside the walls of Eiber Elementary School, a Title 1 school in Lakewood. Working along with diverse leaders, she has tried to help to change the future of children in Denver through education and hope.
Cynthia has worked hard to bring together different leaders to build self-sustaining programs for the community. She is most proud of having identified leaders among low-income families and connected them with wealthy foundations to help children, many of whom have since overcome their difficult backgrounds and low socioeconomic status to graduate from high school.
Cynthia is compelled by JVA’s mission because it is a way to achieve long-lasting social change, working with the community. She believes the way to achieve this is by educating and taking the time to listen to those affected by poverty, mental illness or other challenges. Only then can we define the problem, create a solution that is owned by those affected, and come to the point where we are no longer needed.
Cynthia earned her licentiate of clinical psychology at Universidad Iberoamericana (UNIBE) and her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the Autonomous University of Monterrey, Costa Rica. She has also completed numerous additional professional trainings, including primary and advanced training in rational emotive behavioral therapy (REBT), physical and mental assessment and diagnostics of psychological testing.
Cynthia has always been involved in educational programs that help leaders to identify the problem and craft solutions that best fit the needs of the community at hand. Every program she has participated in has started with a community and is now self-sustaining.
Cynthia is from Costa Rica and has visited many countries around the world, including some in Central America, Europe and Asia. She loves experiencing new cultures and cuisine when she travels. She also loves baking at home for her family, friends and co-workers.