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Allan Hancock College SACNAS Receives National Award for Community Service

The Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) is a national organization composed of highly successful working professionals as well as students aspiring to be.

This month at its national conference, the organization chose the Allan Hancock College SACNAS chapter to receive its prestigious Role Model Chapter for Outstanding Community Service award — a selection that was made from among the country’s community colleges and universities.

“We are one of the smaller SACNAS chapters, but also one of the strongest, especially when it comes to mentorship and student achievement,” SACNAS advisor and mathematics instructor Irene Wong said.

The recognition came at the annual conference held recently in Seattle. The group was also recognized for their outstanding community service in 2008 and in 2011 was named the first-ever Community College Chapter of the Year.

“These awards are very competitive, and I’m so proud of our chapter members who have given so much to the community and to the college,” Wong said.

At the same conference, students Eddie Triste, Elida Gonzalez and Shane Nourizadeh had the opportunity to present their summer internship research. Triste and Nourizadeh studied Nanosystems technology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and Gonzales took part in breast cancer research at the University of California, Los Angeles.

All three students were able to participate in their respective research projects because of connections made through the SACNAS organization, Wong said.

SACNAS is dedicated to fostering the success of scientists, whether college students or professionals. Members are dedicated to giving back through mentorship, peer networks and professional development.

— Sonja Oglesby is a public affairs and publications technician for Allan Hancock College.

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