Behind the Resume #60 – LaRea Sylvester

LaRea Sylvester new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?
My title is Campus Security Officer. My day-to-day endeavors will be making sure our campus is safe, secure, and prepared if emergencies occur. Another big part of my duties will be acting as an ambassador of the College in order to make sure that our campus is accessible to our community while helping our students, staff, and faculty reach their immediate and long term goals and destinations. I act as a support and safety net for all those who come on to our properties including our satellite campuses.

Tell us a little about your professional background.
I held a DOL issued Unarmed Security Guard license prior to joining the EvCC team. I performed duties on a contractual basis from Bellingham to Seattle, including Bellevue/Redmond. I also have 15+ progressive years of experience in the Tribal Gaming industry. Although I primarily worked in Slot Operations and Slot Systems, I am also certified to deal Poker, Black Jack, and Roulette.

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Me, freshman year at Everett High School
Me, freshman year at Everett High School

I have had too many jobs to single out just one as most memorable. The job I enjoyed the most was being a Slot Technician. I was responsible for all mechanical and technical aspects of 2500+ slot machines. The field is constantly growing and evolving, so there was never a dull moment.

What does a typical day look like for you?
My day starts early! My shift begins at 6:00 a.m.; the first thing I do is debrief with the night shift so I can stay up to speed on anything that has occurred. I also like to conduct a safety check of the campus right away in order to identify anything out of the ordinary or unsafe, so we can correct or fix the issue prior to community arrivals. After completing safety checks, I begin daily patrols of our campus to meet and greet everyone, provide excellent customer service, and help manage any and all things related to parking.

Baby Rea
Baby Rea

Describe yourself at 12 years old.
I was invincible; I could do and be anything I wanted, and at 12 years old I wanted to be a “grown up.” Now (27 years later) I just want to be in elementary school again for recess and field trips.

What is your favorite meal/ snack in winter? Favorite winter beverage?
Pozole or Menudo and Eggnog Chai Tea Latte

What would be the title of your autobiography?
Rea the Rebel: Blessed & Unstoppable

What is the first concert you attended?
Boyz II Men at the Tacoma Dome

What is a defining moment in your life?

Me & my daughter
Me & my daughter

The birth of my daughter is the defining moment in my life; who I am and everything I do is attributed to her. She keeps me grounded, focused, and accountable to someone bigger than myself. I am very fortunate and thankful that I became a parent.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
I am reading two books:
How to Win Friends & Influence People, by Dale Carnegie
The Lotus Sutra, Translated by Burton Watson

What one food do you wish had zero calories?
Doughnuts

Surfing off of Maui
Surfing off of Maui

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
I’m a military brat, so I have a few home towns:
(1) Riverside, CA (2) Las Vegas, NV (3) Honolulu, HI (4) Everett, WA (save the best for last)

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I will still be a Security Officer with the EvCC team, but BETTER! I will be highly knowledgeable, a recognized ambassador to the community, AND I will know and remember everyone’s names.

What do you like to do on your days off?
What I like to do changes with the season (except watching UFC, that’s 365).
Summer: wakeboarding, surfing, hiking, riding my motorcycle
Fall: football, shooting
Winter: STILL football, snowboarding
Spring: riding my motorcycle, missing football, hiking

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
“You are free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of your choice.”
~Leo TiagoLaRea Sylvester

Behind the Resume #59 – Max Gerloff

Max Gerloff New Employee PhotoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

Science Lab Assistant.   

Tell us a little about your professional background.

I was a biology/life science teacher/track coach for 30 years in the public school sector.  Retired from that endeavor in 2011.

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Teaching science to 7th graders.  They are so eager and waiting to be filled with knowledge and want to learn!!

What does a typical day look like for you?

Get up and check on my home chickens, then off to EvCC!!

Describe yourself at 12 years old.

Grew up in a small farming and oil community, got my first job mowing yards!

What is your favorite meal/ snack in fall? Favorite fall beverage?

Coffee is the favorite beverage and nachos is always the best snack!

What is the first concert you attended?

Blood, Sweat, and Tears  in Abilene, Tx.

What is a defining moment in your life?

When my first grandchild was born three years ago.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?  

“Three Day Road” by Joseph Boyden

What one food do you wish had zero calories?

Any Mexican dish!

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?

Aspermont, Texas;  born and raised. Population:  800

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Probably fully retired; more traveling.

What do you like to do on your days off?

Tend my chickens and yard with my wife.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?

“Feels like Far”…referring to life’s journey.

Behind the Resume #58 – Caitlin Jacques

 

Caitlin Jacques new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

My title is Student Success Technology Specialist. I am currently working to implement the new Starfish platform, and will be providing support on that platform once it rolls out.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

Doctoral Hooding at Johns Hopkins, June 2016
Doctoral Hooding at Johns Hopkins, June 2016

My background is a bit of a hodge-podge. I have an undergraduate degree in general engineering, and a masters and doctorate in civil engineering, looking at the impact of disasters on healthcare systems. My previous jobs before coming to EvCC, though, were tutoring K-12 students in math and English, and working with a legal firm to coordinate the mass filing of civil cases.

 

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Hiking Taylor's Mistake in Christchurch, NZ, July 2013
Hiking Taylor’s Mistake in Christchurch, NZ, July 2013

In 2013, I lived in New Zealand for several months as an earthquake researcher, sponsored jointly by the US and NZ governments. That was especially memorable because it was both my first time living abroad and the first time I coordinated a large scale project by myself. It was also memorable because the South Island of New Zealand is indescribably beautiful, and those three months included some of the best hiking of my life.

 

What is your favorite meal/ snack in fall? Favorite fall beverage?

In the fall, I love to make soups. Beef stew, chicken gnocchi, avgolemono, fishball udon. My favorite, though, is turkey Italian wedding soup, with lots of sage and homemade turkey stock.

With my sister on the Washington coast, 1990 or 1991
With my sister on the Washington coast, 1990 or 1991

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?

Currently, I am reading Seanan McGuire’s The Girl in the Green Silk Gown. Her books are always delightful, and it’s nice to support a local author.


Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?

I was born and raised right here in the north end of the greater Seattle area! I lived in Shoreline and Mountlake Terrace my entire childhood. When I finished my graduate degree on the east coast, I knew I had to come back here, because there is no place in the world like the Pacific Northwest.

 

What do you like to do on your days off?

Appearing as Princess Leia with Saber Guild in Atlanta, September 2018
Appearing as Princess Leia with Saber Guild in Atlanta, September 2018

In my free time, I dress up as Star Wars characters and do lightsaber shows to raise money for charity, as a member of several international clubs. I also sew a lot of film-accurate costumes as a part of my involvement with these groups. Most weekends, you can find me out in the community somewhere, dressed as a Jedi or Princess Leia or an X-wing pilot and generally being nerdy for good causes.

Behind the Resume #57 – Ibrahima Diallo

Ibrahima Diallo new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?
Full-time temporary Physics Instructor. I will be teaching Engineering Physics classes.

Tell us a little about your professional background.
I obtained my PhD at Virginia Commonwealth University where I did some research in optical properties of defects in GaN.

What was your most memorable job? Why?
Teaching general physics classes at the University of Mary Washington. I always had to think of different ways on how to teach complex physical concepts in the most simplistic yet interesting manner.

What does a typical day look like for you?
Food, prayers, wife time, workout and physics.

Describe yourself at 12 years old.
I would often think about how to make combos on Mortal Kombat (no Google back then), and the intricacies of Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics.

What is your favorite meal/ snack in fall? Favorite fall beverage?
Steaks all day, every day.  Water all day, every day.

What would be the title of your autobiography?
I would probably never write my autobiography as my personal life is “personal.”

What is the first concert you attended?
I can’t remember.

What is a defining moment in your life?
Realizing that adulthood is a SERIOUS work in progress that will take an ENTIRE lifetime.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
Physics books. Nope.

What one food do you wish had zero calories?
None. There is nothing wrong with being a little fat.

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
Richmond, VA. I was born in Kamsar/Boke, a small town in Guinea (West Africa).

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Being an AWESOME physics professor.

What do you like to do on your days off?
With the wife: walking around parks and lakes and talking about cool stuff.
Without the wife: watching TV, reading Quran and eating like a monster until passing out in the couch.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
Consistency in one’s work represents a major step towards utter success.

 

Behind the Resume #56 – Kari Hiser

Kari Hiser new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?
I’m the Senior Graphic Designer for College Advancement which means I’ll be designing a lot of the print and digital content you’ll see at EvCC.

 

Tell us a little about your professional background.

Photo booth picture with Kari and colleagues
Most great design comes from collaboration. I’m lucky that I have a strong community of design friends in my life.

Prior to EvCC I worked as a visual and interactive designer for a digital ad agency called Mixpo. Before then I was a graphic designer for the Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) in Seattle. I’ve also worked as a freelance illustrator and branding designer for five years.

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Kari kneeling with dog on a hike
Summer hike to Sourdough Gap with my pup.

My most memorable job would have to be MOHAI. The variety of projects and everyone at the museum were so dedicated to their work, which made it an exciting place to be.

 

What does a typical day look like for you?
Busy but fun.

Describe yourself at 12 years old.
I was really into nature and animals, especially sketching them. I would spend hours illustrating.

What is your favorite meal/ snack in fall? Favorite fall beverage?
Homemade granola and lattes.

What is a defining moment in your life?

Kari sitting on a rock in front of a valley
Enjoying the scenery at the top of Dishman Hills, Spokane.

Going back to school so I could have a career I truly enjoy.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
My Ex-Life / Quiet: The Power of Introverts

What one food do you wish had zero calories?
Pumpkin pie

Group picture backpacking
4-day hike through Paria Canyon with my adventurous friends.

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
Grew up in Federal Way, but I lived in Seattle for 17 years.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Enjoying life and traveling whenever I can.

 

What do you like to do on your days off?

Kari with her husband in front of a waterfall
Husband and I celebrating 10 yrs with a road trip to Mt. Hood.

Hiking in the woods with my dog, friends, and husband in tow.

 

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
You are entirely up to you.

Behind the Resume #55 – Daniela Sierra

Daniela Sierra new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?
I am the new “Bilingual Career and Completion Coach” responsible for the outreach and recruitment of EvCC’s Mechatronics program. I will be a resource to the students from start to finish, ensuring successful student completion to connecting them with jobs and internships.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

Teaching a "hand-washing" lesson at the health post in Peru
Teaching a “hand-washing” lesson at the health post in Peru


I graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a degree in Communications, minor in Psychology. After graduation, I lived in Peru for over 2 years serving as a Health Educator for the U.S. Peace Corps. I managed two community-based health projects in a rural community in the department of Lambayeque (located on the coast of Peru). This experience contributed to some of the most challenging/rewarding/humbling and unforgettable experiences of my personal and professional development. Once returning from Peru, I worked for the Department of Homeland Security at the Los Angeles Asylum Office. Now, I find myself in the beautiful Pacific Northwest at EvCC.

Enjoying a break in the clouds after a storm in the Andes Mountains of Peru.
Enjoying a break in the clouds after a storm in the Andes Mountains of Peru.

What was your most memorable job? Why?
My service in the Peace Corps. This experience taught me that happiness is found in the simplest forms.

What does a typical day look like for you?
Wake up, have a fresh cup of coffee, and be grateful for a day filled with new opportunities.

What is your favorite meal/ snack in fall? Favorite fall beverage?
Peanut butter cups and chamomile chai black tea.

What would be the title of your autobiography?
Just go with it.

Daniela with children and mothers in Peru
Teaching mothers in the community how to practice “early stimulation play” for their children under 5 yrs. old.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
I am currently reading “Educated,” by Tara Westover.

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
I am a Southern California native, born and raised.

Daniela with her husband at Shoshone Falls
Husband and I at Shoshone Falls, Idaho.

What do you like to do on your days off?
In my free time, I enjoy: exploring new hiking trails with my husband, practicing yoga, exploring books of different genres, and scheming towards the next adventure.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
“Tough situations never last, but tough people do.”

Daniela on a hike
On a summer hike here in Washington.
Daniela running in the Encinitas Half Marathon
Running the Encinitas Half marathon. I try to do at least one half marathon a year.
Daniela celebrating in Columbia
Taking in the beauty AND COFFEE of Cartegena, Colombia on a summer vacation after completing 27 months in the Peace Corps.
Presenting the first recognized student leaders association "Steps Forward" in the community of Morrope.
Presenting the first recognized student leaders association “Steps Forward” in the community of Morrope.
Daniela doing yoga with a local high school class in Peru
Incorporating yoga classes for P.E. at the local high school in a Peru in the community of Morrope, Lambayeque.

 

Behind the Resume #54 – Kristina Jipson

Kristina Jipson new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

I’m a new FT English Faculty member, and I’ll be teaching English classes, meeting with students, and doing whatever else I can to support the school.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

I’ve been teaching since I was a teenager. I’ve taught horseback riding to kids and adults, yoga to Boulderites, Spanish to elementary school kids, infant care to new mothers, life skills to adults in transition, and English/writing to students at Columbia University, Yeshiva, the New York Institute of Technology, Baruch College, the Cooper Union, Notre Dame, Edmonds Community College, Hugo House, and, in about three weeks, EvCC!

Grammi and Grampie leave Florida to brave the ferry
Grammi and Grampie leave Florida to brave the ferry

I love the science and the art of teaching, and I’ve served in faculty development positions at most of the schools I’ve taught at. Most recently, I served as Co-coordinator of Faculty Development at Edmonds, where I learned a lot about the amazing 5-Star Team and EvCC’s role as a leader school in cutting edge pedagogy.

I’m also a passionate writer. My first book of poetry, Halve, was selected by Dan Beachy-Quick for the Tupelo Press Berkshire Prize, and my work has appeared in AGNI, American Letters & Commentary, At Length, Chicago Review, Colorado Review, DIAGRAM, Fourteen Hills and elsewhere. I’m a newcomer to fiction-writing, and I’m very excited to have a debut story forthcoming in Tin House in a couple of months and a draft of my very first Great American Novel being read by literary agents now.

Hoh rainforest with the family
Hoh rainforest with the family

What was your most memorable job? Why?

When I was in college, I worked in home health and hospice care, and the patients and families that invited me into their homes absolutely amazed me. I’ve never forgotten how they made space in their lives for suffering and sadness without losing their love for one another or their ability to carry on with the ordinary business of everyday life.

What does a typical day look like for you?

I try to start my day by 4:00 so that I get a couple of hours to write before my nine and four-year-old get up. Then we do the school-prep and school-run routine, which, once you factor in sock-selection in the house and song-selection in the car, takes approximately one million minutes. Once the kiddos are dropped off, I come to campus and get to work prepping, teaching, and meeting with students. After-school-time works the same as the morning in reverse, with personal aspirations about exercise and home improvement interspersed with extracurricular activity runs, homework supervision, and the relentless nightly project of dinner and bedtime. That leaves about an hour and a half after the kids go to bed during which I aspire to do many things, including bond with my spouse, but I most often fall asleep about twenty minutes into a TV show that I’m “really going to make it through this time.”

Describe yourself at 12 years old.

Snack Time
Snack Time

Purple glasses. Seasonally-themed braces. Floral leisure suits obviously picked out by my mother. I had a faint hope that having a horse made me cool, but it was pretty much undermined by anxiety over the fact that I had no way to figure out who the Red Hot Chili Peppers were. (Oh horror of being a tween before the internet!)

What is your favorite meal/ snack in summer? Favorite summer beverage?

My summer menu is probiotic-themed. Favorite food is Greek yogurt, mixed berries, and granola—in mixing-bowl-sized quantities. My favorite summer beverage is kombucha. Last year, I made a cottage industry out of brewing my own, but my family revolted at the kitchen being overrun with mason jars of bacterial yeast.

What would be the title of your autobiography?

Mathilda and Louise exploring EvCC
My daughters exploring EvCC

Hmmm, choosing titles for my future memoir is one of my favorite schticks, but it almost never gets laughs, so I refuse make that mistake here!

What is the first concert you attended?

The Counting Crows at Red Rocks. We had tickets, but inexplicably jumped the fence to get in.

What is your vacation spot in the summer months?

I grew up spending summers in the small town my family is from in Central Maine. My folks recently fled to Florida, so the camp by the lake is gone, but for me the phrase “summer vacation” will always mean jumping off a wharf into a lake.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?

I’m reading Louise Erdrich’s amazing LaRose and Martha Nussbaum’s Political Emotions: Why Love Matters for Justice (look out, ENGL& 101 students, some of this one is coming your way!). The fact that I’m not sure I know what a “reading challenge” is makes me wonder if I’m qualified for my job… If there’s a Book It for adults, I’d like to know about it. I’d do it in a heartbeat for the Pizza Hut personal pies.

What one food do you wish had zero calories?

4th of July
4th of July

I want to say something more surprising than chocolate cake, but…

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?

I was born outside of New York City, but spent most of my childhood in California, Arizona, and Colorado.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Here! I’ve hit the officially and happily boring part of my life where I like where I am and what I’m doing and would love to have everything stay more or less the same. We live in a beautiful spot in Brier in my kids great-great grandparents’ farmhouse and this position at EvCC is more or less my dream job.

What do you like to do on your days off?

Writing, reading, yoga, playing with my kids. I’m also always up for any adventure that’s a minimum of forty-five minutes away from home.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?

Hmmmm…maybe Ginsberg’s “first thought, best thought”? I actually think it’s terrible writing advice, but I love it for everything else. It reminds me to be easy in the world, leaving the worrying to my responsible, generous, and overworked spouse.

Behind the Resume #53 – Khou Moua

Khou Moua new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

My title is: Administrate Assistant 3 or Faculty Support Staff. Day-to-day endeavors: supporting and assisting faculty, maintain division databases, tracking division travel, and assisting and collaborating with coordinators and project leaders for the Humanities Alliance.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

I have spent about 4 years at Western Washington University as Program Support Staff for the College of Business and Economics. I helped coordinate events, updated budget reconciliations, and assist in events that required travel.  

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Hmong dancers
I spent a quarter coordinating a tradition Hmong dance for Cultural Shock at WWU.  

I wouldn’t consider this a job, but more like a passion and a goal. During my undergraduate years at Western Washington University, I helped organize and establish a cultural club at WWU called the Western Hmong Student Association. The goal and purpose of the cultural club was to bridge the higher education community and the Hmong community together. Statistically, the Hmong community in the Northwest has fewer higher education participants, in which motivated me to make a difference for the community. I love my culture and assisting my community towards success.

What does a typical day look like for you?

It’s only been the third day for me, but usually I arrive at my office a little bit before 7:15 a.m. Then, I go around the building to open workrooms and place notices on classrooms (if needed). After that, I do lots of online training and review documents relating to my position’s duties. I grab some coffee and continue with my work until the end of the day.

Khou & family at volleyball tournament
My family and I during a volleyball tournament 2 years ago.

Describe yourself at 12 years old.

When I was 12 years old, I loved to play sports. I was especially invested in volleyball and tennis during those times. I participated and joined not only the school volleyball team, but also the city volleyball leagues. I was extremely outgoing and loved the outdoors. Now I just play volleyball with my family and friends.

What is your favorite meal/ snack in summer? Favorite summer beverage?

My favorite meal in the summer is pho, especially when my mother makes it. Although it is a warm noodle soup, I crave it the most during the summer. Favorite summer beverage definitely has to be cold ice water.

What would be the title of your autobiography?

My Crazy Hmong Life

What is the first concert you attended?

I haven’t been to a concert yet.

What is your vacation spot in the summer months?

Usually my vacation spots are at the beaches or anywhere with nice scenery, or my parents’ home in Spokane.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?

Khou & fiance
My fiancé and I during our trip to bay.

My last book I re-read was the Lord of the Rings: The Hobbits by JRR Tolkien.

What one food do you wish had zero calories?

Pho

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?

My hometown is Spokane. I was born there and raised there, until I decided to go to Western Washington University. Now I live here, on the west coast.

Khou in Kyoto, Japan
I spent one year studying aboard in Japan. This is a picture from Kyoto, Japan.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I see myself traveling the world. I have traveled to Japan, but I would love to visit my friends in France and Australia.

What do you like to do on your days off?

I like to lift weights and watch a good movie.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?

“Take your time, but don’t waste your time. There’s a difference. And finding that balance will make your experience these next 10 years really awesome.” – Philip Wang from WongFu Production.

Behind the Resume #52 – Herman Calzadillas

Herman Calzadillas new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?
My title is: Employment Solutions Manager. Day to day endeavors: helping to bridge College Workforce Training to the community by raising overall awareness of EvCC programs amongst employers, students, and other community learners, in addition to helping our EvCC students connect with meaningful employment and connections in the workforce.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

Family at the beach
My family at the beach

I’ve spent 20+ years in higher educational leadership and nonprofit management. Twelve of these years were at Lake Washington Institute of Technology engaged in higher education promotion and outreach, both for domestic and international. My most recent employment spanned 8 years at the Foundation for Private Enterprise Education managing all facets of donor relations, programming, volunteer management, and outreach.

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Herman with high school youth in Italy
I spent two weeks in Italy delivering a business program for high school youth.

My most memorable job was working at Lynnel Farms situated just outside of the Tri-Cities. The farm had all sorts of animals but their prized possessions were the quarter horses. My job was to tend to these horses from cleaning out their stalls, feeding and grooming, to warming them up by riding them! It was a great way to grow up, and instilled in me the “farmers” work ethic.

What does a typical day look like for you?
Well, I’m on day three as I write this, but my days have been consumed by meeting with various team members not only here at CCEC and AMTEC but across the EvCC campus. My calendar is slowly populating with connections important to the onboarding process. I’ve met some great people who are passionate about their work here at EvCC, which has been great.

Herman and family on a hike at Wallace Falls
My family at recent hike to Wallace Falls. We all survived!

Describe yourself at 12 years old.
Hmm, at 12 – junior high – I was involved in all sports. I played football, basketball, baseball and wrestled. I rode my bike everywhere to visit friends and enjoyed school immensely.

What is your favorite meal/ snack in summer? Favorite summer beverage?
I’m a breakfast guy! Love to go big during this meal, especially weekends. Summer beverage is a blended breve mocha.

What would be the title of your autobiography?
El Tiempo De Mi Vida: La Fiesta Sigue

What is the first concert you attended?
I think it was a Janet Jackson concert at the Tacoma Dome.

Children with grandfather
My kids and their grandfather

What is your vacation spot in the summer months?
We go to the beach – Ocean Shores and Long Beach are frequent stops.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
My last favorite book that I read was, “God’s Middle Finger: Into the Lawless Heart of the Sierra Madre” by Richard Grant. It’s set in an area where I was born and my parents grew up.

What one food do you wish had zero calories?
Tacos!

Children with grandparents
Kids really enjoy time with their grandparents!

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
I was born in Chihuahua Mexico, but raised in Pasco, WA.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Working in the education industry continuing to make an impact on the community!

What do you like to do on your days off?
I like hanging out with my family and typically working on the house and yard. I also try to catch up on some favorite TV shows.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
“To me there are three things everyone should do every day. Number one is laugh. Number two is think – spend some time in thought. Number three, you should have your emotions move you to tears. If you laugh, think, and cry, that’s a heck of a day!” Jim Valvano

Family posing in the snow
My family and I in the snow

Behind the Resume #51 – Emma Ka’aha’aina

Emma Ka'aha'aina new employee photoWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?
I am the new Program Manager within the Diversity and Equity Center. My position will expand the center’s initiatives to Monte Cristo where our new, student-advocated-for, First Peoples Gathering Space will be housed. My day-to-day endeavors will primarily focus on supporting our Native American and Pacific Islander students here at Everett by providing them with a space to be in culture with each other. Additionally, I will be working with on-campus and off-campus partners to support our local native communities and their student access and success initiatives.

Tell us a little about your professional background.
While earning my Masters Degree in Education with a concentration in College Student Affairs from Rutgers University, The State University of New Jersey, I served as a Hall Director for first year engineering students. Additionally, I advised the Native American Culture Association and worked as a First Year Retention Advisor.

What was your most memorable job? Why?

Emma and family at graduation
My recent graduate school graduation ceremony. Family is everything to me – they are the reason why I am so successful and why I’ve been able to accomplish so much. Everything I do is because of them and for them.

My most memorable job was during the summer between my first and second year of graduate school. I was an intern at Kapi’olani Community College on Oahu, Hawai’i, and worked in the Kapo’oloku Native Hawaiian Student Success Program. Throughout my time there, I was able to solidify my passion for working with Native/Indigenous students within a community college setting. After five years away from home and the Hawaiian culture, the internship allowed me to reground myself and my passion.

What does a typical day look like for you?
Once our space is completed, a typical day would be me within the space, creating a welcoming environment for any student who walks through the door and being a resource for them; which could look like anything from connecting them with other offices and walking them over to make the initial introduction, or giving them information on resources within the Everett and Snohomish community.

Emma with her brother and sister
These two are my best friends and siblings, Luke and Victoria. Luke is a cancer survivor and Bone Marrow Transplant recipient. Victoria will start her second year at Creighton University in Omaha, NE this fall.

Describe yourself at 12 years old.
Seventh grade… I played the clarinet, swam, played water polo and had the worst attitude, ha! Sooooo sassy. My teenage years came with a lot of growing pains. Sorry Mom and Dad!

What is your favorite meal/ snack in spring? Favorite spring beverage?
I am hooked on Lavender Ice Cream at the moment- so yummy! I love anything guava, passion fruit or pineapple. Oh, bubble tea is very, very good!

What would be the title of your autobiography?
“Nagawa Natin; Ua Hana Makou: We Made It, We Did It, Together”

What is the first concert you attended?
Christina Aguilera!

What is your favorite hobby or pastime?
I Crossfit; it’s really a great combination of gymnastics, weightlifting, and cardio.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read? Are you participating in any reading challenges?
I am not reading anything at the moment- grad school kind of took the fun out of reading, ha! But I am open to any suggestions for my next book.

What one food do you wish had zero calories?

Emma with grandparents
Here I am with my Tutu David and Tutu Bunnie. “Tutu” is grandparent in Hawaiian.

Peanut Butter!

Where is your hometown? Were you born and raised in the same place?
I was born and raised on the island of ‘Oahu in Hawai’i.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In five years, I hope to still be serving our Native and Indigenous students within a student success program.

What do you like to do on your days off?
I like go and check out a new food spot, spend time with my cat (and friends..), and spend as much time in the sun as possible.

Do you have a favorite quote/ piece of advice?
I am only in the position that I am in because of the people in my life who have loved and supported my dreams, talents, aspirations, and skills. My favorite quote used to be “to whom much is given, much is expected” but it made it seem like my support system was only giving me support in order to gain something- which I believe is not the case, so I’ve amended it. “To whom much is given, much is expected-of oneself.” Because I am so thankful, I will be sure to take everything I have been given and use it to make everyone proud and to create real change, for good.

Emma with her maternal grandparents
Here I am with my Tata and Mama- they are my maternal grandparents.