Resilience of NSC Graduate Inspires Campus Community

Phuong Dinh

Phuong Dinh has long dreamed of walking across the stage at her college commencement—even when she wasn’t sure she’d ever be able to walk again. On September 24, 2015—just days before starting at North Seattle College—Phuong was in a bus accident that killed five of her classmates and left her and others severely injured. Phuong endured numerous surgeries and spent a year in a rehabilitation center. Despite what she experienced, Phuong never once considered giving up her academic pursuits. In fact, her goal to return to and finish college is what pushed her to work so hard during rehabilitation. 

This Friday, Phuong will achieve that goal. She will be among nearly 900 graduates who cross the stage during the Seattle Colleges’ 2019 Commencement ceremony at T-Mobile Park on June 14. The commencement brings together Class of 2019 graduates from North Seattle College, Seattle Central College and South Seattle College. 

Phuong will graduate with an Associate of Arts degree and is on her way to earning a Bachelor’s in Economics from a four-year college. She plans to pursue a career in law so that she can help others. She credits much of her success to the caring faculty and the community she’s found at North. It’s a community she’s helped shape, too, as an active member of the campus. 

Phuong served on Student Leadership for two years, acted as the college’s Sustainability Coordinator and served on the Research and Advocacy Board, a position in which she helped lobby legislators in Olympia for funding for a new remodel of the college library. Phuong also served on the Student Administrative Team, which approved funding to recently open the college’s first ever Equity and Welcome Center. And she’s organized free textbook and voter registration drives, volunteered at the campus Food Pantry and performed in the Vagina Monologues, something she did as part of her focus on social justice issues.  

Phuong may be leaving North, but she says the college will always be a part of her. And her story—of grit and perseverance—will continue to inspire the campus for years to come.

“Everything I’ve tried to do at North has not just been for me,” she said. “But for the five friends I lost that day and to honor their lives.”

 

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For more information about the Seattle College Commencement ceremony, please visit: http://seattlecolleges.edu/district/currentstudents/commencement.aspx

Posted on: June 12th, 2019 at 16:47:06

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