Rozette De Castro

Class Year: 
Current Position: 
RAY Fellow, Trash Free Seas
Current Organization: 
Ocean Conservancy
Washington, DC

Rozette grew up in the sunny sugar cane capital of the Philippines- Negros Occidental but now calls the Bay Area home. She graduated from the University of California- Berkeley with a Bachelor's degree in Political Science. She is a first-generation transfer student and Filipina-American. Her identity, family and community are important to her because they are what keeps her going. 

While on campus, she was deeply involved in UC-Berkeley's Asian Pacific American Student Development (APASD) center and Pilipinx Academic Student Services (PASS) that are geared towards creating recruitment and retention programs for underrepresented communities. These spaces were where Rozette became more passionate about community advocacy. Her senior year, she created and led various programs and workshops to help community college students successfully transfer to 4-year universities and is proud to have helped create the first summer mentorship program for incoming Asian Pacific American(API) transfer students. Through this experience, she then went on to intern in Washington, D.C at the Univeristy of California Federal Governmental Relations office as a Matsui Fellow- where she worked on various higher education, immigration and health care policies. After D.C. she then flew to Sacramento, CA to finish her Matsui Fellowship at Cal-EPA State Water Resources Control Board- where she was analyzing water related measures and propositions for the State of California. Interning at Cal-EPA is what made Rozette want to pursue a career in the environmental space and the lack of diversity in the space, became more of the reason for Rozette to advocate for more representation in the environmental movement. She then flew back to D.C. to work for CAPAL, an AANHPI non-profit that's mission is to increase representation for Asian American, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders in the public sector field through summer internships. 

She is currently working at Ocean Conservancy as their Ray Fellow on the Trash-Free Seas team where she hopes to bridge the gap between science and community advocacy. In her free time, Rozette loves to try out different recipes online, check out cute coffee shops and restaurants and watching shows on her Netflix to watch list. Although her ideal free time would definitely be hiking up California's coastal hiking routes or snorkeling in the beautiful waters of the Philippines.