Barack Obama Global Preparatory Academy


Welcome to the GEAR UP program at Barack Obama Global Preparatory Academy! Our mission is to break the barriers through our students’ success. We serve the graduating classes of 2024 and 2025.

Members of GEAR UP are service-oriented minded individuals looking to make a difference in the lives of the students that we serve. The purpose of our efforts is to see students grow and succeed on their journey academically and socially as they gain awareness on colleges and careers that best fit them.

To learn more about GEAR UP please stop by our office in room 128.

  • Contact GEARUP
  • Room 128

Our Staff

  • Martha Ramirez

    Martha Ramirez

    Site Coordinator

    • College: California State University, Los Angeles, Master of Science Degree in School Counseling Leadership, Bachelor of Arts in Spanish Language and Literature
    • Favorite Movie: The Pursuit of Happyness
    • Favorite Food: Chinese and Mexican Food
    • My biggest influence:  My mother is my biggest influence.  She instilled the value of higher education, commitment and dedication.  I witnessed her struggle as a single parent, her resiliency and day-to-day sacrifice to provide a brighter future for my brothers and me.
    • Why I love my job:  I love to motivate students to reach their full academic potential. As a first-generation student myself, I understand the importance of having resources, a strong support system and mentorship.
  • Sara Breuninger

    Sara Breuninger

    Academic Counselor

    • College: Azusa Pacific University (MA) and California State University Fullerton (BA)
    • Favorite Movie: Too many to list… The Hunger Games, Napoleon Dynamite, and Bridesmaids.
    • Favorite Food: I am a pretty open book when it comes to food. I like to try new things but still love all the old standbys like pizza, sushi, pasta, and tamales.
    • My biggest influence: I have had some amazing and talented teachers in my educational history who lead me directly to where I am today so thanks to them!
    • Why I love my job: Anytime I get to work with awesome students and colleagues I am a happy girl! Knowing each day I have a chance to help someone succeed is what puts a smile on my face.
  • Miriam Parada

    Miriam Parada

    Community Representative

    • College : East Los Angeles Community College
    • Favorite Movie : Tombstone, Harry Potter
    • Favorite Food: Chiles Rellenos, and anything that won’t make me sick
    • My biggest influence : My family!
    • Why I love my job: Doing the parent aspect of our program is very rewarding for me, as a parent myself I know the feeling of wanting to do more for my child’s education and sometimes not having all the information to know where to even start.
  • Steven Brown

    Steven Brown

    Academic Advisor

    • College: University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
    • Favorite Movie(s): 8 Mile and Above the Rim
    • Favorite Food: Foods served at Coney Island (Midwest/Michigan thing)
    • My biggest influence: My hometown of Detroit (and of course family and the people). Detroit made me who I am today.
    • Why I love my job: I love this type of work because I have the opportunity to integrate the knowledge needed for student success in their pursuit of academic excellence also their college and career aspirations.
  • Stephanie Beresewicz

    Stephanie Beresewicz

    Academic Advisor

    • College: UC Berkeley
    • Favorite Movie: The Little Mermaid
    • Favorite Food: Panda Express orange chicken
    • My Biggest Influence: My 10 cousins! They are my motivation to keep pursuing my goals and be a positive role model for others.
    • Why I love my job: I love helping students reach their academic goals and connecting them to opportunities to grow academically as well as personally. Getting to know each student and watching them blossom into a goals-focused young adult is one of the most rewarding aspects of my job.