Meet the Team

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Yanira Pacheco

 

  • Get to know Yanira
Yanira serves as the First Generation Student Initiatives Coordinator for UW Tacoma. In this position she supports the ongoing work of the First Generation Fellows Cohort program, and helps increase the services and programs across campus that support the almost 60% of UW Tacoma students who are the first in their family to attend college. This work involves partnering and collaborating with many programs and initiatives that are focused on increasing the retention through graduation of all students. It also entails developing and delivering co-curricular programming that enriches the academic life, and enhances the experiences and overall success of first generation students. As a student services professional she brings more than nineteen years of experience in the field. Her areas of interest are the college experience for sophomore students, first generation students, learning communities, and student organization advising. She enjoys gardening, reading and watching movies!
MAJOR: Bachelors of Arts in Public Communication with a specialization in Public Relations from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras.
Hometown: Bayamon, Puerto Rico
What are you most excited about for First Generation Student Initiatives? I’m looking forward to our collaboration with the UWT campus community in developing opportunities to validate, recognize and celebrate all the accomplishments and contributions of our first-generation students. “I think there should be a rule that everyone in the world should get a standing ovation at least once in their lives” R.J. Palacio
Advice for first-year students? Remember to ask questions. All questions are good and helpful questions. If you don’t know what to ask or how to ask the question , that’s okay. Just share your concerns and your experience, ask for help!
What is the one thing you love most about UWT? I appreciate the kindness and the sense of caring of our UWT Family!
Favorite food? White rice with onion sautéed beef steak accompanied with fried tostones. For dessert some delicious flan!
  • First Generation Student Initiatives Coordinator

Margarita Daisy Gonzalez

 

Get to know Daisy!

Margarita was born in Washington raised by Immigrant parents. She is a first generation student with Mexican roots. Brought up in a family that would encourage their children to pursue their passions and encouraging each other to have a better life than they had. My families goal was to raise their children here so that we could take advantage of opportunities that would have never been available to us in the towns they were born.

Major: Social Welfare

Hometown: Puyallup,WA

What are you most excited about for First Gen Fellows? 

First Gen Fellows offers so many opportunities to grow and learn and I want to share that with the students that make up our diverse campus and getting to know them.  

What has been your favorite class at UWT?

All the classes I have taken so far have all been engaging and I’ve learned so much from them all, but if I had to choose it would either be TSOCWF 101 or TURB 210. TSOCWF 101 encourages students to go out in the community and make connections and TURB 210 makes students look into urban communities and the history of them.

Advice for first-year students?

Don’t let your mess ups and mistakes define you, they are all part of the learning experience.

What is the one thing you love most about UWT?

The people I have met here and the things I’ve learned.

Favorite food?

Too many to choose just one, but ice cream is always good. 

  • Leadership Development Coordinator

Theresa Walters
 

 

Get to know Theresa!

Hi all! My name is Theresa Walters. I am a senior at UWT I am 21 years old. I am the oldest of 4 kids. Both of my parents are from West Africa but I was born in Silver Spring, Maryland. I am a fairly new vegetarian. I enjoy dancing, singing, long hikes and collecting knives. I'm in the Army Reserves, and am a cadet at PLU Army ROTC program. I will begin my Masters program in September.

Major: Politics, Philosophy and Economics w/ Emphasis in Politics

Hometown: I grew up a military brat so I will claim Ft. Wainwright, Alaska as my hometown.

What are you most excited about for First Gen Fellows? 

End of the year celebration! My co-workers have been telling me non stop about last year and how excited it was. The cohort as well has been a fun journey to be a part of!

What has been your favorite class at UWT?

Dr. Ben Meiches's class on The Politics of Security

Advice for first-year students?

Advice for first-year students is to get involved on campus! You can do so by working on campus (you will be well immersed I promise!) Attend events, stay connected to faculty and staff you meet. Leave your print.

What is the one thing you love most about UWT?

One thing I love the most about UWT is the sense of community. Due to the size of the campus it is easy to still meet a lot of new people and maintain relationships. Local businesses also stay involved in the community which is pretty cool.

Favorite food?

My favorite food has remained close to the same since I became a vegetarian almost a year ago. Deep fried plantains!! Please insert heart eyes.

  • Leadership Development Coordinator

Nhien Le
 

 

Get to know Nhien!

Nhien Le is a first-generation student, who understands the hardships and responsibilities that needs to be up held for success. But he also understands that it is also ok to fail sometimes and that not everything will go perfectly.

Major: Currently Undeclared

Hometown: Stockton, California

What are you most excited about for First Gen Fellows?

I am most excited about getting my art work known around campus.

What has been your favorite class at UWT?

My favorite class was a class known as “Art and Culture of Japan."

Advice for first year students?

It is ok to fail as long as you make up for it in the future.

What is the one thing you love most about UWT?

One thing I love about UWT is the people because when I showed them my art they showed appreciation for my work.

Favorite food?

My favorite food is grilled eel.

  • FGF Marketing Coordinator

Poala Jean
C Chua

 

Get to know Paola!

Paola is a first-generation immigrant from the Philippines. She and her two sisters were raised by their grandparents as their single mother worked overseas throughout her childhood. In 2012, they moved to Washington. She left the Philippines as a Sophomore in high school but continued as an 8thgrade here. Transitioning between schools, cultures, and languages were her main challenges growing up, but she eventually adjusted over time. Currently she is a sophomore in hopes of getting into the Biomedical Sciences program and to apply to medical school.

Major: Biomedical Sciences (Intended Major)

Hometown: Puyallup, WA

What are you most excited about for First Gen Fellows?

I am most excited of all the events that we hope would benefit the students personally and academically.

What has been your favorite class at UWT?

TBIOL 130 was my favorite even though I didn’t receive my expected grade. The course was the most interesting out of all introductory biology courses and the professor

Advice for first year students?

My first advice to first year students is to use their resources (advising, TLC, counseling, healthcare, pantry, gym and many more) as much as they can. These are part of our tuition and meant to accommodate your university experience. Second is to attend events and meet RSOs and organizations. This is where they can meet others of same interest or explore other interests and even make friends. Third is to enjoy the process.

What is the one thing you love most about UWT?

UWT is such a close-knit campus. This is one of its most known qualities out of all three UW campuses. I feel that students here feel easier to relate and connect.

Favorite food? Salmon Maki

  • FGF Operations Coordinator