Degrees and Certifications:
Samantha Pal is a Student Director on the OUSD Board of Education. She is a junior at Oakland High School, and was born and raised in Oakland. She uses her heritage as a Khmer student to her advantage in how she advocates for all students, and especially students of color.
Samantha has been an active leader within her community since the sixth grade when she was a Restorative Justice (RJ) Circle Keeper and Peer RJ Leader. She’s also been involved with the District’s All City Council (ACC) as a delegate for the past four years, and she sat on the ACC Governing Board as media director in 2019-2020.
Samantha has been actively engaged in uplifting student voice and engagement through the Oakland Youth Vote, to give students a powerful voice for change within the District. During school closures, she has worked to build meaningful student/adult partnerships to ensure the well-being of the District and to make sure that students’ voices are heard and valued.
She comes from a family who survived genocide in Cambodia, coming to America in hopes of providing a better future for their children. Samantha says she is here to empower youth and that she believes “we don't do the work FOR our young people but WITH our young people. I was the change of the past, I am the change of the future and I am making changes in the present.” Her goal is to see the community thrive together rather than divide itself.