Yolanda's association with the Department of Defense spans over 38 years of commitment as a United States Marine, Defense Contracted Senior Systems Engineer, and Civil Servant. She is an Operational Research Analyst at the Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific in San Diego and serves as the Naval Information Warface Systems Command Science Technology Engineering and Math Federal Action Officer (NAVWAR STEM FAO) and the NIWC PAC STEM Director. She oversees STEM programs across six states and transforms initiatives into actionable efforts. She has created postsecondary STEM Outreach programs and aligned outreach efforts with organizational expertise, educational partners, and community needs. With her leadership STEM Outreach pivoted to the virtual environment and she developed a best practice STEM virtual internship program to ensure that students continued to attain valuable workforce skills during the COVID 19 pandemic. She embraces complex problems and incorporates analysis, research, and strategic planning to positively impact STEM.
Her STEM Outreach efforts across San Diego County include K-12, postsecondary, and community-based organizations. She has been published in Future Force Magazine, Building STEM Success Through Educational Partnerships and serves as the San Diego Math Engineering Science and Achievement Industry Advisory Board Chair.
As a believer in lifelong learning, Yolanda holds a B.S. in Computer Information Systems, an M.A. in Education, a Graduate Certificate in College Advising and currently completing a Doctorate at Northeastern in Higher Education with a dissertation emphasis in STEM.