Cooking Up Confidence: Meet Amy and Karen

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Amy Hunsberger (far left) has a serious day job, and a serious after-hours cookie hobby.  By day, she is an attorney with the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services and advises the agency that oversees the Medicare and Medicaid programs. When she isn’t working, chances are you’ll find her baking and decorating cookies with rainbows of royal icing. She joins the Lovin’ Oven teens about once a month to coach them in cookie projects that are sold at the No Name Café or given as gifts to Teen Services donors.

Karen Torres (right) first heard about Teen Services through her Foods Class at Sonoma Valley High School. After taking the Servsafe and Service Etiquette classes, she enrolled in the Ready to Work Certification classes and began working at the Lovin’ Oven. It wasn’t long before she met Amy, who “taught me how to decorate the heck out of cookies! She’s the best!  I love her creativity and she’s just a wonderful person.”
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At Cowboy Cab last June, Karen received TSS’ John Randall Scholarship to help with her college expenses. Now a freshman at San Diego State with a major in business, Karen reflects back on her times with Teen Services. Learning to write a resume was the highlight of the RTW class and allowed her to land jobs at both Train Town and the Westway, but she continued working with Amy, volunteering at Cowboy Cab, and spending time at the Teen Center. “TSS is like a second home. Everyone there is so friendly and they have helped me so much and I am very grateful.” 

carol_and_karen.jpgIn looking at what lies ahead, Karen responded: “I'm the first to attend college in my family and I have worked hard to get to where I am. I'm the oldest of three younger siblings and both my parents are from Mexico. I don't have my life planned out but I want to study abroad! I just hope for the best and I can't wait to see where life will take me.”