Sep 06, 2022 3:38 pm
Anton Dang, 23, arrived in the United States from Vietnam with his family at the end of 2018 and beginning of 2019, with little more than dreams for a new future in America. He enrolled in English as a Second Language (ESL) courses at Pierce College, and never looked back.
“My first step in the United States was to enroll at Pierce College, and it’s helped me so much,” Dang said. “ESL was a good environment for people like me to learn English, and it helped me adapt faster to life in the United States. My time at Pierce College gave me a lot and made me a more hopeful person, not only in my family, but in the community.”
Throughout his time at Pierce, Dang has held a variety of jobs to help support his family. In addition to working hard to help his family financially, he is also actively involved in helping his community. He and his family are proud members of the Champa community, an indigenous ethnic group from Southeast Asia. Dang volunteers his time with the local Champa community to teach the younger generation more about their language and culture. “These activities are very meaningful not only to me, but also to our Champa community,” Dang said. “I believe teaching our culture to the younger generation in the United States is the best way to preserve the cultural identity of the Champa people.”
Thanks to the scholarship support he received from the Pierce College Foundation, Dang was able to continue his education without the added stress of worrying about how to pay his tuition. He is proud to say he earned his Associate in Science from Pierce College, and looks forward to transferring to University of Washington to major in Electrical and Computer Engineering this fall.
“Without my scholarships, I would have had to work all the time to help my family,” Dang said. “My scholarships gave me more time to focus on my studies and not worry so much about food, rent, and how I will help my family. We don’t have a lot of money, and receiving these scholarships meant I had more time to stay home and focus on my classes. I don’t want to leave Pierce College, but I’m also so excited to start my program at the University of Washington!”