Ellen Pinto Awards
The Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year Award is named in honor of Mrs. Ellen Pinto to recognize her service to Tacoma Community College. Born in Fort Calhoun, NE in 1909, Pinto was active in the Tacoma community for nearly 40 years. She served as both President of the TCC Board of Trustees and President of the Washington State Trustee Association of the Community Colleges.
The Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year Award acknowledges high academic achievement, contributions to the TCC learning environment and service to the surrounding community. Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year Award serves to acknowledge high academic achievement, contributions to the TCC learning environment and service to the surrounding community. Finalists are interviewed by the TCC Board of Trustees, who select the Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year.
Tashawn Deville: Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year
A transfer student plans to go to the Evergreen State College Tacoma to study social justice, Deville wants to eventually develop an internship to teach youth about life skills and poetry. She currently mentors students who were previously in the Washington foster care system and advocates for her own education and the education of her fellow students.
“Tashawn has utilized her role as a student leader to brining interactive events to students with diverse interests,” reads her nomination. “Tashawn started a strong open mic night series that inspires students to be themselves, build community, and share and create culture. She is a natural leader and empowers those who are working with her to use their voice and talents while guiding them to reach success.”
At TCC, Deville was a champion student participant in Tacoma’s “Louder than a Bomb” Poetry Slam team. The next year she came back to coach TCC’s Fresh Start team to victory in the competition. She has also served as an Office of Student Engagement (OSE) leader in Entertainment and Community Life.
In the larger community, Deville serves as a youth program facilitator at the Boys and Girls Club, volunteers with the Titan Food Pantry and Nourish Pierce County, and volunteers for Metro Parks Tacoma.
Luke Byram: Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year Finalist
A strong advocate for disability rights both at TCC and in the larger community, Byram inspired the beginnings of the Accessibility Committee on campus. He has participated in student panels related to disability issues, brought in guest speakers, and presented to the college Board of Trustees about both his experience as a student with disabilities and about his experience as a member of TCC’s first Study Abroad group.
“Luke has been consistent in showing up and speaking up,” reads his nomination. “He has attended hiring forums and asked smart questions about diversity and inclusion. When Luke wants to see something change for the better he speaks his mind – including writing his professors and even the President of our college.”
In addition to his work at TCC, Byram served as a board member for the Center for Independent Living in Lakewood. He has been active with the City of Tacoma’s Office of Equity and Human rights, and in 2017 he travelled to Washington, D.C. as a youth leader and advocate for disability rights.
Hyat Saleh: Ellen Pinto Outstanding Student of the Year Finalist
Saleh is part of TCC’s Heath Information Management Bachelor of Applied Science program. At TCC, she participated in the Muslim Student Association Club and the Health Information Technology Club. She was part of a panel discussion about the importance of community partnerships in working together to improve opportunities for students.
Not content to achieved academic excellence herself, Saleh has tutored in Arabic and English at grade levels ranging from high school to college, assisted with essays, and helped students learn to used programs like Microsoft Excel and Power Point.
In the larger community, Saleh makes sandwiches and packages supplies for the homeless. She has volunteered at CHI Franciscan and is currently working with the Muslim community to design educational information for women regarding health care rights and navigating the health care system.
Every year, each department has the opportunity to nominate one or more Outstanding Students for the Departmental Awards. Congratulations to the Departmental Award Nominees for 2020!
Business Education Center (BEC)
Kayla M Shaffron
Community Health Bachelor of Applied Science
Seung Eun Song
DEVELOPMENTAL EDUCATION ENGLISH
Health Information Management Bachelor of Applied Science
Health Information Technology
Sung Min Kim
Math Advising Resource Center (MARC)
Son T Nguyen