Behind the Resume #4 – Karen Ehnat

Karen EhnatWhat is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

I am the Director of the Center for Disability Services, and I provide leadership and manage the day to day operations of the department as well as work directly with students. My job is to ensure that students with disabilities are free of discrimination and given the same opportunities as all other students. This doesn’t happen in a vacuum, and one of my favorite parts of my job is collaborating with and supporting others on campus in providing a barrier-free environment.

 

Tell us a little about your professional background.

I am a proud Husky, having earned my BA in Psychology and Master’s in Social Work from the UW. Prior to working in higher education I served as a juvenile probation officer, a counselor of teens and their families, a director of a group home and foster home licensor. My first experience in a college environment was at the Art Institute of Seattle serving in a variety of roles for over 22 years. My greatest accomplishment there was to advocate for and develop their first disability services office.

 

What was your first job?

Karen 2
Zoe

At 17 years old, my first job was tutoring and supervising the other tutors serving underserved children. It really was a strange situation since I had no supervisory experience.

 

How do you commute to work? What is your favorite radio station/ program to listen to on your commute (if any)?
I drive from Shoreline and usually listen to KIRO radio to be aware of any traffic issues and catch up on the news. On the way home, I frequently talk to a friend on my hands-free phone.

What is your favorite hobby or pastime? 

I have a tiny cabin on the coast and love to walk on the beach, read and play with my dog Shasta and cat Zoe. (Shasta is at the cabin in the photo below.) I have been a Seahawk fan since the 80s, and sat through many losing games until the end when only the diehards remained in the stadium. So exciting to see them on top!

Karen 3
Shasta

If you could have any super power (flying, time travel, etc.), what would it be?

If I could have any power, it would be to eliminate hate and discrimination on the planet. Imagine a world always at peace, and everyone treated respectfully and equally- the possibilities of that world are endless and amazing!

 

What are your goals/ ambitions in your position at EvCC?

Of course, I want EvCC to be in compliance with the civil rights laws protecting those with disabilities. To do so, my major goal is to establish EvCC as a cultural leader in always designing and providing accessible electronic materials (such as websites, instructional materials and software) for students, employees and the community.

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read?

The Boys on the Boat about the UW crew team who won the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. This is an inspiring story about underdogs overcoming barriers and the author cleverly paralleled the events in Germany to provide the context.

Who is your hero/ heroine? Why?

I was blown away by Barbara Jordan when she gave her speech at the Democratic Convention in 1976 and spoke of “equality for all and privilege for none.” She was the first African American woman from a southern state to serve in Congress and a powerful and eloquent leader in the civil rights movement. She embodied how and who I wanted to be: passionate about justice, live by my values and a voice to help others to be heard.

Karen 4What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Why?

“Choose your battles” has been helpful in both my career and personal life. It goes along with the question, “How important will this be in 5 years?” It is important to determine and start with those that are truly important and evaluate the situation to decide which approach to take. It definitely focuses me and helps me to stay sane!

Behind the Resume #3 – Derek Walker

Derek Walker What is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

I am a Digital Marketing Specialist for the Office of College Advancement. I will be helping to market, promote and communicate the many programs, events and activities EvCC has to offer with current students, prospective students, parents and the community through social media and visual storytelling.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

I started out many years ago as a graphic designer for a stock photography agency in Denver, CO. I’ve been creating marketing materials and digital media in different forms for nearly 20 years. Most recently, I had been working as a video producer/editor for various clients such as the City of Everett and Amazon Web Services. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication from the University of Colorado and a Master of Communication in Digital Media degree from the University of Washington.

What was your first job?Derek 2

I bounced around a few jobs in high school such as dishwasher, landscaper and pizza cook and I volunteered for the Jr. Ski Patrol. In college I was a ski instructor for a small ski area near Aspen, CO. I also worked in a ski shop tuning skis and boards as well as renting out equipment to locals and tourists on ski vacations.

How do you commute to work? What is your favorite radio station/ program to listen to on your commute (if any)?

I live in North Seattle, so most days I take the bus. I usually read or listen to music, but sometimes I just catch a little snooze.

Where is your office located/ how do you get to your office?

My office is #210 in Olympus Hall. It is on the east side of the building across from the copier/break room (it’s a temporary space, not sure when I’ll be moving to my permanent office).

What are your goals/ ambitions in your position at EvCC?

My goals are to help EvCC reach out to the community by telling great stories; stories about the people, programs and history that make EvCC such an important part of the community. Institutions for higher learning are where people come to better themselves and to improve the lives of their families and loved ones. Sharing those successes through video and social media is a great way to market EvCC to the community and surrounding area.

DerekWhat is your favorite hobby or
pastime?

Growing up in a small mountain town in Colorado, I grew up on skis. Since I moved to Washington I haven’t skied nearly as much as I’d like, but any activity that gets me outdoors is what I really enjoy. I fly-fish, golf, hike, camp and generally love to explore all of what Mother Nature has to offer.

If you could have any supernatural ability, what would it be?

The supernatural ability I’d most like to have would be the ability to instantly learn to do anything I see. For instance, if I watched Tiger Woods play golf, I would instantly be able to play golf like a pro. That way I’d eventually be an expert at everything!


What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read?

I really enjoy historical fiction and Ken Follet is one of my favorite authors. I recently finished “Edge of Eternity”, which is the final book in his Century Trilogy that follows the lives of multiple families from different geographic regions through several generations over the course of events of the 20th Century.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Why?

“Remember, you’ll always regret what you didn’t do rather than what you did.” I think this is important because life is about experiences, and the more you experience the happier you’ll be. If something interests you, go for it! If it turns out it’s not for you, then you never have to do it again. But if you don’t give it a try, you’ll never know.

 

 

Behind the Resume #2 – Bilal Abdallah

Bilal

What is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

My title at EvCC is the Director of Workforce Funding: As a Director, I provide leadership and manage the day-to-day operation of Financial Referral Center and WorkFirst. The two departments, which I currently supervise, encompass Worker Retraining, Opportunity Grant, Basic Food Employment and Training (BFE&T), WorkFirst, Emergency Book Loan and the Job Center.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

As a child, I developed a strong interest for the criminal justice system because I was fascinated by the T.V show Criminal Law. Based on my interest with the show, I then oriented myself to pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology from the University of Washington. Upon graduating from the University of Washington, I realized that a career in the criminal justice system was not my passion and that’s when my career took a turn toward the educational field. Eventually, I went back to school and received my Masters of Education from the University of Washington. I have a very diverse career path! I jump-started my career an early age with East African Community as Educational Engagement Personnel. In this role, I tutored the after school homework club children with their homework including Reading, Writing and Math then Employment Specialist with Center Career Alternative, then a Career Counselor with Asian Counseling Referral Services, then a Workforce Project Manager with Green River College, and now here Everett Community College as the Director of Workforce Funding.

What was your first job?

Educational Engagement with East African Community Services. I tutored kids with their homework in Reading, Writing and Math. Part of this position required me to confer with parents or guardians, teachers, administrators and other professionals to discuss the children’s progress and resolve resolve problems.

How do you commute to work? What is your favorite radio station/ program to listen to on your commute (if any)?

I commute to work by car and my favorite radio station is Movin’ 92.5 FM. My commute is long, approximately an hour and a half, so I like to keep my mind occupied with upbeat music and sometimes documentary-style radio.Bilal Abdallah

What are your goals/ ambitions in your position at EvCC? 

My goals/ ambitions in my position at EvCC is to foster the economic growth in the region by leveraging all Workforce and Financial Referral Center Funds (internal and external) to provide high quality and cost effective training solutions to Everett Community College’ students. Because of my professional experience, I bring a unique perspective and an enthusiastic spirit to this position. I’m excited to see what the future holds!

What is your favorite hobby or pastime?

I enjoy watching sports on TV, and definitely rooting for the Husky Football team – Go Dawgs!

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read?

Currently, I’m reading workforce policy.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Why?

Give everything at your very best and eliminate excuses. I believe this is something that everyone can do!

Behind the Resume #1 – Chayuda Overby

Hello! Welcome to Admini{sphere}. We’re glad you stopped by!

We’re kicking things off by introducing one of our newest team members, Chayuda Overby. Take some time to get to know Chayuda, through her own words!

Chayuda 3 What is your title at EvCC, and what will you be doing in your day-to-day endeavors at the College?

I am the director for the BRIDGES Center. My day-to-day priorities are to serve students’ needs, empower them, and build students’ sense of self -efficacy through the BRIDGES’ programs. As a director of the BRIDGES Center I cherish our mission: helping non-native English learners and at- risk students find their way to careers in healthcare, aerospace, and advanced manufacturing. Our BRIDGES team endeavors to help students as they learn to navigate the college system from inside and outside the classroom through the point when they start their post-college career. I feel rewarded every day knowing how our team supports student success.

Tell us a little about your professional background.

I bring a clear mission and passion for working with underrepresented students. I know I can have a high impact with students who lack a lot of social capital and come from low socioeconomic backgrounds who need help navigating higher education. I was inspired by myChayuda Overby mother who taught low-income students for 30 years. Growing up in a house where the conversation around the dinner table was about students, teaching pedagogies, and creating gracious space for communities has enabled me to thrive in this profession. I started working in higher education nine years ago in the Student Services division at Highline College in Des Moines, Washington. My work involved supporting students through Counseling, Running Start and High School programs, Multicultural Services, and Student Life. I continued to serve students in the Master Achiever Center (MAC) at Green River Community College to support students as they transitioned from Basic Skills to college programs. I am fortunate to have experienced working for both the Student Services and Instruction divisions.

What was your first job?

I was an English tutor – believe it or not! My first student is now studying at King’s College in London earning her Master in Business Administration!

How do you commute to work? What is your favorite radio station/ program to listen to on your commute (if any)?

I live in SeaTac so my commute is pretty unbelievable (yes, it is). I listen to NPR when I need to feel like I am learning and catching up with the world. However, I like to listen to a show called “The Second Date Update” on 92.5 in the morning. It doesn’t require a lot of neural activity, but it sure makes me laugh and helps me relax when traffic is bad.

What are your goals/ ambitions in your position at EvCC?

My ambition is to make sure that the BRIDGES Center serves more students in transitioning to college through the services we provide inside and outside the classroom. My personal ambition is to create a community of trust and authenticity for our students and to bring their identities, cultures, and languages to campus. I am a strong advocate for creating a place where students can haChayudave a sense of belonging, reflect who they are, and take ownership of the campus.

What is your favorite hobby or pastime?

My Free time is to connect to my spiritual healing through world travel and yoga. The photo below was when I traveled to my favorite place – Uppsala, Sweden.

I enjoy my regular practice of hot yoga, where I always find my spirit is uplifted. Chayuda 2

What are you reading right now/ what was the last book you read?

My Title III report! The last book I read was called “Let Your Life Speak” by Parker J. Palmer (Author of The Courage to Teach).

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received? Why?

You get what you give!

My grandfather was a mayor of a small village in Thailand. He always shared his wisdom through the action of “giving without expecting.” I witnessed his generosity – his genuine giving heart – and what he got was pure love from people.