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2023-2024 Academy Fellows

  • Aya Abuobaid

    Aya Abuobaid

    Aya Abuobaid is a senior attending Alaska Middle College School. Her affiliate school is Service High School in which she is taking jewelry. Aya has been taking jewelry since her sophomore year and absolutely loves the arts! She is a hard working, independent individual who also enjoys being outdoors and listening to old rock bands. Aya is uncertain about what to major in, but she has been looking into different pharmaceutical careers. While her plan is to go to UAA her first year, she plans on switching to UAF to continue her college journey and make more precious jewelry!

  • Lyndsey Boomgaard

    Lyndsey Boomgaard

    Lyndsey Boomgaard is a senior at Eagle River High School and Alaska Middle College School. She has lived in Alaska her whole life and is planning on pursuing a career in accounting. This mission has started with her working towards a OEC in Bookkeeping then hopefully moving to work full time at a local firm. Her goals are to eventually become a certified public accountant and work at an international corporation so she can be given the opportunity to travel the world.

  • Haley Johnson

    Haley Johnson

    Haley Johnson is currently a senior attending the Alaska Middle College and her affiliate Service High School. She was born and raised in Anchorage. While her future career goals are to be in the FBI she has a huge passion for music. She is currently in Choir at Service and Glee at UAA, and has done many different types of music programs throughout her life, such as band, musicals, and percussion ensemble.

    When she isn't working, in class, or practicing music, she's most likely watching/listening to crime documentaries or podcasts. Her biggest passion is being a criminal profiler for the FBI. She is working hard on everything required to get into it, including grades, different languages, and even physical health. She is very excited to use the skills she learns in this program to her advantage.

  • Rodney Kennedy

    Rodney Kennedy

    Rodney Kennedy was born in Fairbanks, Alaska and moved to Anchorage a few years after he was born. He enjoys a multitude of outdoor activities and sports and is always up to meeting new people. He went to Polaris K-12 up until 8th grade but transferred to Service High school for its redeemed Seminar program and better education experience. He decided to pursue Alaska Middle College on his own and though college classes require a lot of skills not used in High school he is adapting well. He hopes to major in Business as well as a major/minor in Communications and Psychology at University of Wisconsin-Madison. Rodney signed up for this program to develop his leadership skills further and because of the importance of leadership in all arrays of life.

  • Vanessa Kim

    Vanessa Kim

    Vanessa Kim was born in Los Angeles, California, but raised in Anchorage, Alaska, for over 13 years. She is currently a senior in high school, attending Alaska Middle College while playing volleyball and working at a restaurant. In her free time, she enjoys playing games on her computer she built herself and staying active. In the future, Vanessa hopes to attend a college out of Alaska to pursue a career as a dental hygienist or physical therapist.

  • Christalyn Matheson

    Christalyn Matheson

    Christalyn Matheson is a senior attending the Alaska Middle College School, her affiliate school being Eagle River High School. She is currently part of the Anchorage School District’s Business Academy, where she is taking online accounting coursework through the University of Alaska - Fairbanks to attain a Bookkeeping Technician Occupational Endorsement. During her freetime, she enjoys giving back to her community by volunteering with the American Red Cross, and binge watching Netflix TV series. After graduating, Christalyn hopes to attend university on the East Coast in Pennsylvania, majoring in Accounting, with an end goal of becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

  • Xander McEwen

    Xander McEwen

    Xander McEwen was born in Anchorage Alaska and has lived in the same place all of his life. Currently he is attending Alaska Middle College School and taking AFJROTC at South Anchorage High School where he is a squadron commander leading over 30 individuals. He is currently taking eight total courses, of which, five are at UAA. During the summer Xander is an avid hiker who enjoys ascending the many peaks around the Anchorage bowl. While on breaks he also works at Anchorage Gymnastics Association as a sports camp teacher teaching and supervising children. He enjoys fishing for salmon with his family along the Ninilchik river and Xander also has a love for researching and learning about military history. He hopes to attend the United States Naval Academy and major in Nuclear Engineering helping power the United States through clean energy.

  • Julia Montero

    Julia Montero

    Julia Montero is a junior with the Alaska Middle College Program with Eagle River High School as her affiliate school. She has lived in Alaska for 12 years and plans to finish out high school in the state before leaving for college. Julia enjoys the diverse outdoor activities that Alaska offers. In summer, she loves to hike, hang out with friends, and go to the lake. During winter, she enjoys reading and downhill skiing. After high school, Julia plans on attending school in Utah to receive a degree in biochemistry with a business-related minor in hopes of going to medical school. Julia’s main goal in joining the Tom Case Leadership Fellows Academy is to become more confident in professional settings and start her journey towards becoming an active leader in her community and implementing these lessons into her future career path.

  • Zion Prince

    Zion Prince

    Zion Prince is a senior currently attending the Alaska Middle College program. He was born in Virginia, USA and has only been in Alaska for a few years. He has an interest in multiple hobbies including grilling, gardening, and an acute interest in the baritone. He spends a good bit of his time both outside pondering and inside doing his hair. He is the middle child of his family with most of his siblings doing their own thing. His affiliate school is Eagle River High. He has had multiple jobs like working for a supermarket and dog walking. At one point Zion thought his future would be focused on playing the low-brass for a popular orchestra but his dream was short lived.

    He joined the Tom Casey Leadership Program to gain more experience of being a leader.

  • Jesus Rivera

    Jesus Rivera

    Jesus Rivera IV has lived his entire life in Anchorage and is a senior at Alaska Middle College. When he graduates he plans on continuing his studies to become a lawyer or a doctor. When he’s not in class or doing homework he enjoys playing soccer, reading a good book, and playing videogames with his friends.

  • Adriana Hollingsworth Solano

    Adriana Hollingsworth Solano

    Adriana Hollingsworth Solano is a Junior at the Alaska Middle College program and is not only involved in the Tom Case Fellows Leadership Academy but is also in the yearbook, AMCS speaks, the National Honor Society, TRIO ETS, and enjoys working for Camp Fire Alaska. In the little free time she has she enjoys reading, listening to music, spending time with friends and family, and taking her dog to the dog park. She hopes to one day work in the educational field as a high school English teacher.

  • Dahae Song

    Dahae Song

    Dahae Song is a senior currently attending Alaska Middle College School whose affiliate is West Anchorage High School. She moved to Anchorage when she was six years old and was born in the South Korean city of Daegu. Dahae wants to honor her father and her two uncles, who have shown her unconditional love and support. She enjoys singing, cooking, reading, listening to music, and watching movies, among other things. After Dahae graduates, she wishes to go back to Korea.

    Dahae enrolled in the Tom Case Leadership Fellows Academy to hone her leadership skills and study the key characteristics of a great leader. She intends to pursue a bachelor's degree in health sciences at the University of Anchorage in Alaska after completing high school. This fall semester, she is enrolled in a college course to become a Certified Nursing Assistant in order to begin her education and experience in the healthcare field.

  • Valeree Nunez Sosa

    Valeree Nunez Sosa

    Valeree Nunez Sosa, originally born in Santiago, Dominican Republic, but having spent the majority of her life in Alaska, is a dedicated junior at Alaska Middle College School with her affiliate school being East Anchorage High School. Valeree's aspiration to become an effective leader led her to join the Tom Case Leadership Fellows Academy. She recognized the value of leadership skills and how improving these skills can lead to great success. She has an interest in the medical field and a passion for helping others. In the future, she hopes to become a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner hoping to make a positive impact with the world around her.

  • Lila Steele

    Lila Steele

    Lila Steele is a junior attending Alaska Middle College School at UAA. She was born in Portland, Oregon, and has spent most of her life traveling from city to city, finally settling down in Alaska to complete her highschool education. Lila is heavily involved in Alaska’s hockey community, as she is a player, spectator, coach, and paid referee. Lila has also been vegan for over a year, started a PETA SOS hub in Alaska, and is deeply passionate about animal rights and welfare. Lila’s true love, however, is creative writing, which she spends the majority of her free time doing, and she hopes to get her first novel published later this year.

    Lila plans to go to the University of South Florida for college, and hopes to study creative writing there. The two careers she is currently considering pursuing are becoming an author and/or a dermatologist. Lila also loves refereeing hockey and aspires to become a Level Four referee by the time she gets out of high school so that she can referee NAHL games in college.

  • Jillian Stone

    Jillian Stone

    Jillian Rae Stone is a junior attending Alaska Middle College School. She grew up in Anchorage, Alaska however she considers Washougal, Washington home. Jillian enjoys listening to music, spending time outdoors (especially watching sunsets), and taking her dog on long walks. She is interested in pursuing a career helping others. Later in life, she plans to travel Europe and meet new people. Her biggest motivation is the idea of becoming the best version of herself.

  • Ring Thao

    Ring Thao

    Ring Thao is a senior this year at Alaska Middle College and it’s her first year in the program of AMCS. She decided to join Tom Case Leadership Fellowship Academy because she found it interesting during the AMCS orientation presented by Dr. Nelson about the program. She would like to increase her leadership skills, learning more about business and believe that the program will help her build relationships, expand her professional network and help her grow as a leader. She has a wide interest in what she wants to become and pursue. She’s interested in becoming a CEO and owning her own company is one of them.

  • Nathan Todd

    Nathan Todd

    Nathan Todd is a member of AMCS and affiliated with Polaris k-12. Nathan was born outside of Alaska, in Georgia, in Warner Robins. Still, he has grown up in Alaska and thinks of himself as an Alaskan rather than a Georgian. Nathan has grown up participating in many Alaska outdoor activities like hunting, fishing, ATV riding, and some winter activities like skiing and snowboarding. Nathan is an avid fisherman, even spending his summer working at a fish camp. Nathan started Skiing at Hillburg, where he joined a youth-centered race team. After spending over a decade with the Hillburg youth ski team, he has progressed from a racer to a coach. Nathan is interested in a business major but is still undecided on what career he wants to pursue.

  • Megan Traxinger

    Megan Traxinger

    Megan Traxinger is a senior attending Anchorage Middle College. Her affiliate school is Chugiak High School where she is a member of Spanish immersion and National Honor Society. Megan was born and raised in Alaska and spends most of her free time outdoors fishing, hunting or camping. She participates in many sports such as softball, flag football and golf. Her after graduation plans are to attend college outside of Alaska and play softball. She is interested in the medical field and wants to become a pediatric occupational therapist. Megan is passionate about giving back to the community and plans to return to Alaska.

  • Faith Villaflores

    Faith Villaflores

    Faith Villaflores is a senior at Alaska Middle College School with her affiliate school being West Anchorage High School. She is an honor student who has maintained a 3.7 GPA while receiving a varsity letter in both flag football and volleyball during her time at West High School. She is also enrolled in the Medical Academy program and Future Health Professional also known as HOSA, to further pursue her career in the medical field. Although she was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska, she proudly represents her culture as being a Filipina. Faith loves spending time with her family and friends. In her free time she likes to play the guitar, viola, piano, and ukulele. Her goals in the future are to become a diagnostic medical sonographer in the Air Force to travel around the world. She dreams of going to Korea, Japan, Greece, and Hawaii during her time in the military.

  • Patricia Yamat

    Patricia Yamat

    Patricia Yamat is a senior at Middle College and is also graduating from West High School. She was hesitant to join this program but after the application process, she felt more comfortable doing it. She’s a shy but really talkative person. She has a lot of hobbies like painting, crocheting, making DIY gifts, making clay arts, and playing the guitar, and ukulele. She also loves traveling and she is looking forward to doing the Student Exchange Program at UAA to see what the lower 48 offers.