Alumni Spotlights feature outstanding UC Santa Barbara alumni succeeding in their careers, proud of their Gaucho heritage.

Nominate your fellow Gauchos for the Alumni Spotlight series!

Lois Phillips ‘86 arrived at UC Santa Barbara with a strong foundation of Communication and Education experience, having studied at Queens College and the University of Massachusetts for her respective undergraduate and Masters degrees. During her time at UCSB, Lois focused her research on women at the podium as part of a greater academic discussion about women in the workplace and the changing nature of the family unit. Now, Lois utilizes her extensive knowledge to aid her consultancy clients with their professional coaching and communications needs.
Legacy donor and UCSB ‘14 alumna Prathibha Madigapola jumped into research and lab work during her freshman year, as a Zoology major with a passion for environmental science. But one hands-on course– Kids in Nature– granted Prathibha the opportunity to work with local elementary students as an educator. That experience, as well as tutoring her friends, led Prathibha to discover her love of teaching. Now, a decade later, Prathibha runs her own personalized academic support service for students, Learn with Ms. M.
When Sydney Karmes-Wainer ‘19 sat in her Communication lectures as an undergraduate, she wasn’t exactly sure where she wanted to take her career after college. A study abroad trip to Bordeaux, France furthered her love for food and she then found herself working at Erewhon headquarters in Los Angeles post-graduation. After bringing in her homemade protein bites day after day, Sydney’s boss suggested she begin researching how to build a business around her clean-ingredient snack. From there, French Squirrel was born.
Henry Truong ‘12 graduated from UCSB with a newfound passion for the technology industry. He started out at Best Buy and worked his way to his current position as a Lead Product Designer for Disney. Truong designs with a people-centered approach, noting his background in Sociology and Ethnomusicology. The new father reflects fondly on his post-grad path, with the strongly held belief that human connection is what makes life great.
Altif Brown ‘13 made the most of his time at UCSB by joining a handful of extracurriculars and diving into his major, Philosophy. Altif looks back fondly on his college years, reminiscing on the diversity of his experiences. From Ski Team to Black Student Union, the tech entrepreneur immersed himself in all that the university had to offer and in turn, earned lifelong friends and a worthy skillset.
Arriving at UCSB as a freshman, Sarah Allison ‘13 saw her world open up. From soccer to sorority life, she took advantage of every opportunity that came her way. As she realized her teaching passion and potential, Sarah leaned into the unknown and focused on prioritizing her goals.