News Releases

April 6, 2010
For Immediate Release
For additional information: 
Barbara Kerr, APR
Executive Director of
Communications and Marketing
Telephone: 360-992-2921

Two Inspiring Women Represent Clark for Statewide Honor

Students Carolyn Cox and Katsiaryna (Katya) Kavaleuskaya represent
Clark College on the 2010 All-Washington Academic Team and exemplify a spirit of service to others


VANCOUVER, Wash. – Two Clark College students who serve their college and their community were named to the 2010 All-Washington Academic Team. 

Carolyn Cox and Katsiaryna (Katya) Kavaleuskaya were among 63 students from Washington’s 34 community and technical colleges who were recognized on March 25 in a ceremony at South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia.  Washington Governor Chris Gregoire was the keynote speaker.  Clark College President Robert K. Knight was among the guests.

According to organizers, each member of the All-Washington Academic team received scholarships from KeyBank of Washington and the Northwest Education Loan Association (NELA).  In addition, many of Washington’s public and private four-year colleges are offering scholarship opportunities to members of the team.  Cox and Kavaleuskaya also received scholarships from the Clark College Foundation.  

Information about the 2010 All-Washington Academic Team is available at

About Carolyn Cox

2010 All-Washington Academic Team member Carolyn CoxCarolyn Cox has attended college before – not just once, but three times. This time, it is different – and she is different, too – but her spirit of service to others remains.

Cox first registered for classes at Clark College in fall of 1977, right out of high school. A job at Kaiser Aluminum drew her away, but the aluminum industry soon began failing. She attempted to return to school on several other occasions, but health problems with her parents kept her working and caring for them. In later years, a change in marital status and her own illness put her educational dreams on hold. 

Today, she is single, with improved health and grown children, and is studying to become a hospital administrator. “I can often be found having lunch or dinner and studying with my son, [who is] also a student at Clark College,” said Cox. “Family is important to me, and they support my educational goals. I am proud to say they follow my lead.” Cox also works part-time as an office administrator for SCORE Counselors to America’s Small Business; she has twice been honored by the local SCORE chapter for her dedication and service to the organization.

Beyond the classroom, Carolyn Cox is also active at the college and in the community. She is a member of the Alpha Sigma Phi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), the national honor society for two-year colleges, and of the Clark Association of Medical Office Students (CAMOS). She has completed one 900-hour term in the AmeriCorps Students in Service program, with another 900-hour term currently underway. She has also completed training to serve as a court appointed special advocate (CASA) through the YWCA. “Carolyn has shown her ability to build positive and solution-focused relationships with professionals, family members and the children,” said CASA program director Jo Waddell. “Carolyn is clearly very competent and professional in the performance of this critical work for our community’s most vulnerable citizens.”

About Katsiaryna (Katya) Kavaleuskaya

2010 All-Washington Academic Team member Katya KavaleuskayaKatya Kavaleuskaya began attending Clark in fall 2007 as a Running Start student. She and her mother came to Vancouver to escape an abusive situation. Fearful for their safety, without any money, and not proficient in speaking English, Kavaleuskaya recognized that her desire for knowledge and education was the only way to change their situation. “I spent all of my free time at college – studying and watching people that were very happy and ‘free’,” said Kavaleuskaya. “College gave me strength, and I recognized that it would be my home for the next few years.” After finishing high school, Kavaleuskaya continued at Clark. She earned her emergency medical technician (EMT) – basic certification, and is completing her prerequisites to enter the nursing program.

To support her mother and younger brother, Katya Kavaleuskaya works full-time at the Central City Concern Hooper Center as a sobering technician and as an outreach worker on the emergency response services van. There, she monitors clients for withdrawal symptoms and cares for their physical needs as they await release from the sobering station. “From the beginning, [Katya] has always had remarkable work ethic,” said her shift supervisor at the Hooper Center, Lauren Lopez. “She consistently goes above and beyond for both clients and fellow co-workers.” Through her work at the center, Katya has discovered a focus for her career. “After becoming a nurse, I want to work with the same vulnerable population, with people who don’t know how to take care of themselves and who have unintentionally and/or intentionally abused their bodies,” said Katya. “It is a world full of people who really need our help.”

Kavaleuskaya’s desire to help is also evident in her volunteer activities. She is actively involved in the Alpha Sigma Phi chapter of PTK as vice president of scholarship, coordinating scholarly activities hosted by the chapter and promoting PTK to the Clark community. She is also involved with Better World Books, Relay for Life, cleanup of the Burnt Bridge Creek, and participated in the 2009 Bike Commute Challenge.

About the All Washington Academic Team

Phi Theta Kappa, the International Honor Society for two-year colleges, introduced the All-USA Academic Team to recognize and honor two-year college students for their scholastic achievement and community and college service.

In 1994, state-level academic teams were introduced as a way to provide scholarships and scholastic recognition to Phi Theta Kappa members, while promoting excellence at two-year colleges. Students nominated to the All-USA Academic Team are automatically named to their state team.

In 1996, Washington launched its state program. A steering committee comprised of community and technical college presidents, Phi Theta Kappa representatives, public information officers from two-year colleges and representatives from the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges put together the first recognition ceremony in the Governor’s Mansion. The ceremony honored 44 students representing 24 community and technical colleges.

According to organizers, the All-Washington Academic Team program “has become the showcase for Washington’s community and technical colleges because it honors the academic high achievers, the men and women who have demonstrated a commitment to success in the classroom and in the communities in which they live. This recognition demonstrates the state’s commitment to scholarship and community service on the part of those attending the state’s public community and technical colleges.”


EDITORS’ NOTE:  Carolyn Cox attended the awards ceremony in Olympia.  Katsiaryna (Katya) Kavaleuskaya was unable to attend.  Clark College President Robert K. Knight accepted the award, which will be given to Kavaleuskaya at the college at the beginning of spring quarter.  Cox and Kavaleuskaya each reside in Vancouver.