TRIO Upward Bound Staff

The TRIO Upward Bound (UB) Program is a supportive learning community to empower Westminster High School students and their families with navigating college and career pathways. 

Sam Casanova, M.A. (she/they) Sam Casanova

Literacy Instructor

Casanova has over 5 years of educational experience teaching a variety of subjects in the Denver area including Reading, Writing, Literacy, Social Studies, and Sex Ed. At TRIO UB,  Casanova's classes are centered around storytelling and the value of sharing our experiences. Toni Morrison once said, "If there's a book you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it." Casanova supports TRIO students with their personal statements and scholarship essays by encouraging students to reflect upon their intersecting identities and experiences and to re-claim them with pride. 

Casanova has a Bachelor's Degree in English and Theater from the University of Florida; as well as a Master of Arts degree in Teaching from RELAY Denver. Casanova has published works including "Cafe con Leche" (2017) and "I asked out Molly" (2014) as a way to foster conversations around social identities such as race, ethnicity and sexual orientation. TRIO UB truly is a community where we are all constantly growing and evolving; and Casanova is so proud to be a part of this team. When not teaching, Casanova can be found catching their next international flight, trying a new restaurant and/or sun-soaking at the park!

Diana Maggiore (she/her) Diana Maggiore

Math Instructor

B.S. Chemical Engineering - Univ of WI, Madison
M.Ed. Math Education - Univ of MN, Twin Cities

When we lift each other up, we build a better society together.  I am a first-generation college student.  Education opened the world for me, and now I give back.  I bring the experience of a chemical engineering career into the math classroom, and through sharing and serving I aim to help students perceive the ethereal as tangible.  I want students to blossom an intrinsic motivation that makes a difference in this world.   Each person, each voice, each contribution... each matters.  Let's explore the possibilities together.

Laylonda Maines, M.S.Laylonda Maines

Biology Instructor

I have been teaching in the realm of science for 12 years. I teach hybrid, face-to-face, and online classes in science in the community college and university level. I like to be a part of TRIO because it is a pleasure for me to be a part of their community and give back. If it had not been for people helping me throughout my life, I do not know where I would be. 

Kayla Prieto, B.S. (She, Hers, Ella) Kayla Prieto

Engagement and Enrollment Coordinator

I grew up In Commerce City, Colorado and received my Bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Colorado State University. As a first generation Latina, I have loved working with students in supporting their educational journey. it is an honor to work with students from similar backgrounds as me and provide more opportunities and resources for a higher education than I had as a student. A highlight of my job is seeing students grow through the year as they start thinking and applying to colleges and scholarship to them, then starting their actual college journey and all the in between that occur.  Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends and going to the gym.

Dr. Fan Yeung (she, her, hers) Dr. Fan Yeung

Science Instructor

As a biology instructor at FRCC, I am passionate about biology and student learning.  Since the inception of the Trio UB program, I have been helping Trio UB students with anything related to science, from academic support to internships.  When I am not working, I enjoy trying new recipes and reading.