SFCC Student Wins 2016 Transforming Lives Award
Posted: 1/6/2016 1:43:42 PM

Spokane Falls Community College student Armando Garcia will be honored with a Transforming Lives Award from the Washington State Association of College Trustees (ACT) on Jan. 24 in Olympia. Only five students, out of 388,000 students across 34 colleges, are awarded each year.

Coordinated through ACT, the fifth annual Transforming Lives Awards recognize current or former students who have had their lives transformed by attending a community or technical college. The honor also comes with a $500 award.

Garcia is in his second year at SFCC. The son of migrant farmworkers, he came to this country at the age of five. Due to an infection during infancy, his right leg was not fully developed. His parents came to the United States from Mexico in search of better medical care for their son.
He began receiving care from Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Spokane, though the orthopedic shoe he wore opened him up to bullying in school. He also had a new language to learn. “Through working hard to learn English and enduring the simple but strenuous challenge of climbing the stairs in school every day, I fought to break the cycle of poverty,” said Garcia.

Garcia is pursuing his associate’s degree at SFCC with a plan to transfer to earn a bachelor’s degree in political science. He spent last summer in Washington, D.C. as part of the National Migrant and Seasonal Head Start’s internship program where he worked for Farmworker Justice.

“Mr. Garcia epitomizes the TACTC Transforming Lives Award. He has overcome a great deal to pursue his education and is extremely motivated and determined to become an advocate in his community,” said Mike Wilson, chairman of the Community Colleges of Spokane Board of Trustees.

Spokane Community College’s nominee Sarah Hader will also be honored at the ceremony. Single mother Hader earned her GED from SCC at the age of 18. A decade later she returned to the college prep program. She spent a quarter preparing for entrance exams and learning the basics of how to be a successful student. She is now on her way to a nursing degree, with the ultimate goal of becoming a nurse practitioner.

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Posted: 1/6/2016 1:43:42 PM by Global Administrator
Tags: Academic, PressRelease, SFCC
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