4 Bay Area Students Named Leaders by BofA
India-West Staff Reporter
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Every summer, Bank of America selects high school students to be part of their Student Leaders program, an eight-week paid summer internship providing students with first-hand experience in serving their communities. The Class of 2022 student leaders this year include four Indian Americans from the Bay Area:
Bonisha Maitra, an incoming senior at San Ramon’s California High School. After being sexually assaulted at age nine in India, she started a global nonprofit called Project Sundar which now has chapters in Singapore, India, and U.S. cities – aimed at educating people about the oppression women in India face.
Kunal Khaware a graduate of Pleasanton’s The Quarry Lane School, is about to begin a joint undergraduate scholarship program between Duke University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. With a passion for political activism at the community level, he was heavily involved in his high school’s Student Government Association as vice president, elections, and publicity chair.
Sia Desale, a rising senior at Dublin High School is an animal advocate and has founded a homemade soap business geared toward supporting animal welfare called Olivesoap and has raised $8,000 (or 27,000 meals for pets) for the East Bay SPCA and other pet-focused orgs.
Priya Sharma has been taking college-level classes through Napa Valley College since she was a high school freshman. Her interest in the ACLU National Institute led her to be a political chair leader for the Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, and South Asian Alliance. For four years she was a representative for Peer Court, an alternative approach to the traditional juvenile justice system.
Bank of America’s regional executives, Raquel González, President, Bank of America Silicon Valley; Jason Foster, President, Bank of America North Bay; Gioia McCarthy, President, Bank of America San Francisco – East Bay, applauded the students’ exceptional achievements, “Bank of America is steadfast in our commitment to supporting teens and young adults by connecting them to jobs, community engagement opportunities, and leadership development. These students are the future of our community, which is why programs like Student Leaders are one way we can provide paid opportunities for them to gain positive employment experience while developing a diverse pipeline of talent as they enter our local workforce.”
Started in 2004, the Student Leaders program recognizes 300 community-focused juniors and seniors from across the U.S. annually.