Ilia Isorelys Paulino

7 Years with YDO

Involvement: Youth Choir, Youth CITIES, Robotics, Performing Project, Entrepreneurship

My YDO Story | Confident Performer Blooms into Hollywood Actress

Ilia Isorelys Paulino, 2023

- Yale School of Drama '20 - DeSales University '17 - CCHS '13

When I was in the 5th grade, Howard showed up to my school to recruit young singers for what would become the YDO choir. I overheard this as he was talking to another student & I remember chiming in with an “…I sing too!” when he goes “who are you?” to which I reply “I’m a star!” and then boom, I became a member of YDO. From the provided transportation, to the trips to bookstores, YDO is also where I started cultivating my love for the arts. Honestly, everytime I would hear about a new program developing, I would volunteer to be part of it and Howard never said no. He would pick me up everyday and it felt like in his mind, there was nothing I couldn’t do.

YDO fostered the community that I needed, I made many friends, and I always had somewhere to be after school. I fully believe that I would not be here if not for YDO programs giving me the opportunity to try different things, they were the seeds that led to my current blossoming as an artist. It instilled my confidence and showed me that, not only do I have things to say that are important, but that there are always people who are willing to listen. I give my immense thank you to YDO’s founder, Howard Sticklor, for everything he did for me and my community.

Ilia’s Career

Ilia Isorelys Paulino lives in Los Angeles, she is a series regular on Mindy Kaling’s Sex Lives of College Girls on MAX. She also plays Captain Alvida on Netflix’s Live Action adaptation of One Piece. Both series have been renewed for 2nd and 3rd seasons respectively. Paulino has also been seen in Me Time starring Kevin Hart & Mark Wahlberg, Family Switch starring Jennifer Garner, and the newest Spongebob movie starring Wanda Sykes (2024).