Voice of Civic Engagement Award
Edward Sun, Rising 8th Grader at West Sylvan Middle School
Eddie is an active board member of Let’s Peer Up, a non-profit founded by a teenager, with the mission to improve the lives of children with autism and other neurodiverse conditions which impair communication and social skills. Eddie works with the team on planning, fundraising, and event organizing.
To raise society’s awareness of neural disabilities including autistic kids, and to ensure such kids have proper representation, Eddie represented LPU in a speech to the Mayor of Beaverton at the June 23rd City Council meeting, petitioning the city to bring back its Disabilities Advisory Board. From his own experiences, Eddie explained the importance for the whole community of having a disability board at the city level, so that everyone can contribute to building a better community and nobody is left alone.
Since 2019, Eddie has been a board member in the local chapter of Antlers, an Elks youth organization dedicated to charity and community service. His duties include budget planning and fundraising events (sorting and distributing food and clothing to families in need).
Jiaqi (Jackie) Zhang, Rising Junior at Sunset High School
From her continuous participation in volunteering, public speaking, and civic engagement, Jiaqi (Jackie) has demonstrated her leadership by speaking up about her community and inspiring others. Her efforts are shown through many activities, including volunteering at Laurel Parc for over three years, teaching students math virtually over quarantine, raising money to help children in foster care, participating in the OCC winter drive, and not to mention MC/anchoring for the first ever Chinese Festival as well as the Vincent Chin and BLM Memorial Vigil. She was also interviewed by KGW about the Chinese community in order to promote cultural and community engagement. Her actions have overall influenced the young generation to advocate for human equality and to find interest in community based activities.
Youth Empowerment Award
在斯坦福的Knight-Hennessy Scholars program网页上，有这么一段话，”We welcome single-mindedness as long as it doesn’t come at the expense of engaging others. We seek scholars for whom success is a byproduct, not a goal, and leaders who can drive progress for humanity rather than for a select few.” 我们社区培养的也是有着这样mindset的一代华人，非常令人欣慰的是，越来越多的年轻人开始行动了起来。
Danica Leung, Rising Junior at Lincoln High School
Danica is a fierce advocate for student activism, education, and involvement in politics. As a policy debate captain, she created and taught a debate curriculum from scratch for a five day summer camp and a year-long program. She delivered a TEDxPortland Talk on social media activism and was selected to speak on OPB about impeachment. She also has 80+ volunteer service hours with Planned Parenthood’s Teen Council, which educates high school classes about sex education. She has also interned with Kate Lieber’s successful state senate campaign and phone banked, wrote social media posts, and other campaign tasks.
During quarantine, Danica has led an initiative to represent student input when creating online school. After receiving over a hundred responses in just two days, she presented the survey to the principal, which was then passed on to the school board. Her findings were later represented in every teacher’s switch to Google Classroom, for example. Danica has also led her Constitution Team unit through the difficult transition to online learning by working with their coach to create research assignments and regularly meet, which ultimately resulted in earning second place at Nationals as a team.
Qiyue (Cheery) Zhang, Rising Sophomore at Westview High School
Cheery has been a leader and contributed to the community in many ways. A star student in academics and a leader in Westview High School’s Student Government, Cheery is all about building others up and bringing together different communities using the skills she has gained.
Having played ping pong for seven years, earned titles including Oregon State Champion in Women’s Singles, and received opportunities to showcase the sport on local news channels with her teammates, she grew to treasure the sport and wanted to give her peers a chance to discover the fun in ping pong as well. This past school year, she created a ping pong club at Westview. Because of her focus on making the club a fun experience for all different groups of students, the club was among the most popular at school. Through giving everything her best effort and avidly participating within her community, Cheery has learned how to juggle her school load and social life with her extracurriculars, inspiring those around her to participate and excel inside and outside of the classroom as well.
Cheery also enjoys volunteering inside and outside the community. She received the PVSA gold medal in 2019.
Victoria Ren Scholarship
This year’s scholarship will be awarded to Erik Liang, a rising senior student of Tigard High School. Erik not only maintains excellency with his school work, but also a top runner with outstanding performance in the state’s gymnastics. In the past year, he became the main member of the community drum team, participated in all practices, and performed in the two drum performances at Chinese Festival and Spring Festival.
During shelter-in-place, Erik, the founder of the Finance Club of Tigard High, was involved in promoting financial literacy in his community. He also assembled a team, competed in the National Economics Challenge, won the Oregon State Championship, and finished top 20 nationally, all while doing so in his bedroom.
In May 2020, Erik and his FinMango teammates across the world organized a FinMango EXTRAVAGANZA, a global financial inclusion conference. This straight 24-hour Zoom party consisted of keynotes, workshops, and panels from speakers around the world. Erik was the graphic designer for the event and led marketing efforts on social media as well. Over 750 people attended and over 300,000 people were reached through social media.