November 18 Webinar
Jan Yoshiwara, Executive Director of the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges
Executive Director Yoshiwara started at the State Board in 1984 as assistant director of student services and minority affairs. She moved up in the organization to become director of education services in 1994. Today, she leads system-wide programs and policies that prepare students for college-level work, for a career, or to transfer to a university.
She secures and oversees multi-million-dollar grants and supervises state-level research on community and technical college students, staff and resources. She also builds partnerships with high schools, universities, business and labor leaders, state agencies, national associations, and philanthropic organizations. She routinely advocates for community and technical colleges before the state Legislature and Congress, and within national organizations.
She has a bachelor’s degree from the University of California – Davis, and a master’s degree from Western Washington University.
Upon taking the position as Executive Director, she said, “Our two-year colleges give everyone the opportunity for a better future, especially low-income students and students of color. Nothing is more gratifying to me than to see students discover their self-worth and rise.”
Her role includes:
- Assisting in development of policy agendas for the State Board review and action.
- Coordinating with the nine-member State Board and system stakeholders.
- Managing legislative and state agency relations.
- Managing messaging, communications, media relations and the website.
- Coordinating activities of the Washington State Association of College Trustees (ACT), the statewide trustees’ association for the system.
- Coordinating activities of the Washington Association of Community and Technical Colleges (WACTC), which is the statewide presidents’ association.
- Act as the Executive sponsor of the ctcLink ERP project.
November 7 Webinar
Tony Vo, Bellevue College Academic Advisor and
Community Organizer focused on supporting the Southeast Asian and Asian American Community
Tony is the son of Vietnamese refugees. His parents fled Viet Nam from political persecution to provide the family a brighter future. His upbringing, Tony realized, was a pattern seen in many Southeast Asian communities; low-income, first-generation, and limited English. As an undergraduate at the University of Washington, Tony founded a student organization named Asian Coalition for Equality that highlights invisibilities of the Asian community. He also advocated at local, state, and national levels for resources and data that captures the realities of Southeast Asians and organized panels and presentations debunking the “model minority myth.” Tony believes in the power of communities to heal themselves. From 2009 – 2012, he took part in participatory action research for the Vietnamese community and learned their strengths and needs, culminating in a report used to advocate for resources for his community. In 2012, he founded an annual 5K walk/run with neighborhood friends to foster health, build community, and raise money for local nonprofits. This belief in communities led him to student leadership work in the community college system where he advised the Queer Straight Alliance and other organizations. Tony is inspired by the resilience of his mom and sister who ground him in his identities and roots, supporting him on his journey in pursuit of higher education.
Tony Vo started his journey with the Southeast Asian American Education Coalition during his time as a student at the University of Washington, where he lead the efforts in supporting the Southeast Asian Recruiter to become a permanent position. He received his Bachelors in Public Health and American Ethnic Studies from the University of Washington and his Masters of Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Tony is currently the Program Manager, Health and Wellness at Bellevue College. He plans to continue work in higher education providing pathways for underrepresented students to enter, graduate, and leave as critical leaders.
October 24 Webinar
Dr. Amy Morrison, President of LWTech
As a first generation college graduate and passionate advocate for workforce education, Dr. Morrison has committed her career to advocating for college students and community and technical colleges.
Prior to coming to LWTech, Dr. Morrison served for nearly ten years in vice presidential roles including advancement as well as campus operations at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood, Washington. There she was instrumental in advocating for students on the state and federal level as well as ensuring that students had state-of-the art facilities in which to complete their education, including the construction of a 55,000-square-foot Allied Health Building. Morrison also served as adjunct faculty.
Dr. Morrison began her community and technical college career at Bates Technical College where she was responsible for legislative advocacy as well as leading the Bates Technical College Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting students with scholarships and emergency resources.
October 10 Webinar
Emma Scalzo, King County Engagement Manager
Emma (She/Hers) is a recent grad of Western Washington University (WWU) where she majored in Political Science and Sociology. She first became involved with grassroots organizing as a field manager on a campaign to “Save the Honeybees.” She continued those efforts by registering voters, organizing GOTV, and lobbying at WWU. Outside of organizing, Emma enjoys watching movies and listening to podcasts. Send recommendations her way!
More about Washington Bus
The Washington Bus is a statewide movement building organization that increases political access and participation for young people across Washington State and develops the next generation of young leaders. They combine social justice curriculum with structured opportunities to gain hands-on community organizing skills for a one-of-a-kind leadership development experience. They support policy that advances a more just and fair Washington State. We focus on improving access to the democratic process, and ensure young people’s issues are prioritized by policy makers.