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* Nancy Bidondo receives WAVE Award

When the going gets tough, the tough get going…that’s the case with Shoreline Community College Criminal Justice student, Nancy Bidondo, who was recently rewarded for her hard work and perseverance with a WAVE Award from the Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board.  


Bidondo is one of only 128 students in the state to earn the award which recognizes outstanding career and technical education students at community and technical colleges and high schools.  On her way to completing her transfer degree in Criminal Justice, her plans include a bachelor’s degree in sociology or the like.


SDC10335.JPGThe 41 year-old honors student is serious about her education and what she will do with it.  The victim of domestic violence in an earlier marriage, Bidondo is committed to helping others who live in those conditions.  The strength of her character is evident when she talks about making something good out of the years of abuse she suffered. 


“If I can turn evil into something good to help somebody else…,” she says with conviction, referring to her long-term goal of working with juveniles or victims of domestic abuse or both.  She believes that her education along with her experiences will provide the tools to educate victims on how to help themselves and to advocate for legislation that provides support to victims of domestic violence and for effective rehabilitation of juvenile offenders.


Criminal Justice instructor Linda Forst nominated Bidondo.  “She really deserves this recognition.  Nancy is very devoted to learning and growing as a person,” she wrote in the nomination form, emphasizing that Bidondo’s work was always exemplary and “would serve as a model for other students to emulate.”  Bidondo earned a 4.0 in every class she took from Forst.  “I wish I had more students like her.  She puts her all into everything.”


Bidondo equally appreciates Forst and other instructors at Shoreline.


"The instructors are so willing to take extra time in helping. They challenge students by setting a high standard which I appreciate. It allows the student to be stretched and obtain a valuable education," Bidondo said.


Bidondo’s short term plans include volunteering for the Diversion Partnership for Youth Justice program through King County.  The educational program, designed for first or second time offenders who commit minor offenses provides troubled youth with a diversion from a formal court proceeding and may include restitution such as community service, a monetary fine, counseling, or informational or educational classes.  


Her volunteer work does not stop there.  At Shoreline, she takes notes in her Spanish and math classes which she provides for physically challenged students enrolled in the Community Integration Program and participated in a MLK Day Food Drive last year.  In 2007, Bidondo and her husband took their children to San Luis, Mexico on a mission with their church.  She taught crafts classes at a vacation Bible school while her husband and children helped with the construction of a bathroom at the school.  Formerly a hairdresser, Bidondo also provided free haircuts to women, men and children, some of whom were homeless.  Her commitment to helping others continues at home where she cares for a friend’s two year-old child so the mother can take evening classes – in criminal justice. 



The Workforce Board has announced this year's Washington Award for Vocational Excellence (WAVE) scholars. While the WAVE program did not receive funding for scholarships this year, the current operating budget directs the program to recognize scholars for their achievements. The WAVE program is suspended for 2012 and 2013 

* You're never too old to go to school

Mary Tevis Graduation Photo.jpgMary Tevis stood with the others when President Lee Lambert asked graduates at Commencement 2011 to stand if they were on the President’s List. She was the only one standing, however, when President Lambert asked to remain standing if they were 65 or older.


The crowd gave Tevis a standing ovation.


“I really don’t understand what the big deal is,” said the 73-year-old, the oldest graduate this year.


Her family understood.


Tevis' husband and their two sons and their families applauded her success along with the hundreds of parents, relatives and friends of other Shoreline Community College graduates. Tevis hadn’t planned on participating in the ceremony, but her older son who lives in California said she made him walk so she had to do the same.


Tevis, who earned an Associate in Fine Arts degree, with a focus on photography, hadn’t begun her education with a degree in mind – it just ended up that way.


A court reporter for 32 years, Tevis said she woke up one day and realized that she didn’t want to do that kind of work anymore.

“I thought I would just knit and read and garden,” she said, but then when she lost her “point-and-click” camera, her brother told her she had

Mary Tevis earned her degree under the Senior Citizens Tuition Waiver Program which provides seniors (60 and over) the opportunity to pay only $5 for up to two classes and 10 credits per quarter. Seniors can enroll only if space is available and must wait until the second week of the quarter to register to allow time for regular students to enroll. Registrar Chris Melton says that 15 to 20 seniors take advantage of the tuition waiver program every quarter.

to get a more sophisticated camera with more capabilities and that was the beginning of her love for photography.


“I loved it! I totally loved it,” she said. “I used to paint and draw so I had a good eye.”


The energetic senior started taking classes at Shoreline at her husband’s suggestion. He had been taking ceramics classes at the college for many years. He set up an appointment for her to meet with Chris Simons, photography Professor Emeritus and soon afterward, Tevis was taking photography classes.


“I took 101 and 102 and then just started taking everything Chris taught,” Tevis said, not realizing that she was on track for earning an AFA degree. It was her son who noticed and suggested she go after her degree. Tevis thought about it and decided, “Why not? Along the way, Tevis posted a grade point average above 3.9 and made the President’s List.


“I’m addicted to learning,” she said, laughing. Tevis said she was surprised at how much she enjoyed classes she wouldn’t have thought of taking if not needed for her degree, in particular the art history courses taught by Keith Takechi.


Although Tevis has her degree, she is not finished with her education. She is currently taking a beginning Web design class and plans to take more advanced classes in computer graphic design. “Why not? It’s fun and I’m learning a lot,” she said.


Tevis plans to put her degree to work right away, with three Web site jobs in her queue.


“I’ll be able to use not only my photography skills, but what I’ve learned in my (Adobe) Dreamweaver classes,” she said.


Tevis believes all seniors should consider going to school, saying it’s not only interesting and fun but a great way to stay engaged and youthful.


“Why retire and just sit around and moulder,” she said.


Beginning Fall Quarter 2010, Shoreline launched a new program for seniors called Plus 50. Sponsored by the American Association of Community Colleges, community colleges across the country are creating or expanding campus programs to engage 78 million baby-boomers currently reaching retirement age who represent a tremendous resource to the nation in termsof experience, skills, and leadership.


The Associate in Fine Arts degree offers students multiple opportunities and experience in a number of art disciplines with an emphasis on the development of a strong portfolio of artwork. The AFA degree is a model that highlights transfer opportunities as an art major to Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts programs, while providing graduates with a sold foundation for artistic growth and for employment opportunities with just the associate degree. Students pursuing Shoreline’s AFA degree have two options of study. They can complete the Foundation Studio Art Option with a concentration in two-dimensional or in three-dimensional art, or, if they have a clear interest in photography, they can complete the Photography Option.

* Class assignment leads to musical tour for duo


SCC/Sean Duke

Matt Hart (left) and Aubrey Zoli taking a break during a recent recording session at Shoreline Community College.

SCC/Sean Duke

YouTube link

The Local Strangers interview and music  

What if you could be a star, guitar in hand and singing to audiences in major cities up and down the West Coast? What if all you had to do was hone your natural talents with classes at Shoreline and be on your way?

That’s Matt Hart’s dream and while the now former student and his musical partner, Aubrey Zoli, aren’t quite stars yet, they're off to a great start.

Hart’s dream started to become reality last fall. It was November when he brought Zoli to one of his classes to showcase their ongoing work. After that class, Hart and Zoli continued to collaborate, combining his guitar and their voices to perform music together.

That idea, along with long hours of practice and hard work, resulted in their acoustic duo, The Local Strangers. In June, they celebrated the release of their inaugural and self-titled album at Seattle’s historic Columbia City Theater. This summer, they have 12 dates lined up between Seattle and San Diego, including a July 21 appearance at the famed Tractor Tavern in Ballard.

While Matt had natural talents to hone, music faculty were crucial to his successful experience at Shoreline.

Sue Ennis - who has written for the rock band Heart and feature films such as Eddie Murphy’s “Golden Child” and the children’s hit “Thomas and the Magic Railroad” featuring Alec Baldwin – gave key support, Hart said.

“I took Sue Ennis’ class in songwriting,” Hart said. “After finishing the course she continued to be a helpful resource, giving feedback to demo recordings I sent her and helping decide which songs to put on the album.”

Ennis said she offered help, but that Hart was already doing well on his own. “I didn't really sit down and do a full on song consultation with him, but I offered a few tips on lyric changes here and there," Ennis said.

Hart said that Ennis called recently to say the Music Technology 171 class was looking for subjects and asked if the duo were interested, an offer that Zoli said they couldn’t pass up: “Anytime someone offers to record, gotta do it.”

For a FREE download of the The Local Strangers debut album, visit

SCC/Sean Duke, Jim Hills