I Am UAA
UAA alumni live, work and engage with communities in each of the 50 states and across the globe. Hear the amazing stories of impressive UAA alumni in our "I am UAA" story series. Read the most recent profiles below, and visit the Green and Gold website for a complete list of all our amazing 'I Am UAA' alumni stories.
Do you know a UAA alum you would like to see featured here? Email Jessica Hamlin at email@example.com for more information.
Amazing Stories from the University of Alaska Anchorage
Student Spotlight: Katelynn Zanders
All-American Katelynn Zanders is ready for the season ahead, even though the volleyball team is still (temporarily) practicing through the final stages of construction on the new Alaska Airlines Center.
Faculty Spotlight: Irasema Ortega
Science education professor Irasema Ortega, despite her years of experience as a teacher, is still willing to sit at the feet of her new colleagues and friends to learn about new cultures and places. This summer she learned to use an ulu with a mentor at fish camp.
Community Spotlight: Off the Chain
The seven-year-old “UAA Bike Club” stickers haven’t lost their green and gold shine just yet. The vivid stickers pop out throughout the workspace at Off the Chain, an Anchorage-based bicycle cooperative and growing city resource that owes much of its early momentum to the now-defunct group at UAA.
Alumni Spotlight: Sean Rivers
Twelve years ago, his fleet feet propelled him to national championships. Now, he's growing a sense of community through his Portland, Ore., running stores. Meet Sean Rivers.
Alumni Spotlight: Tara Gondek
Weddings are glamorous. Opening a small business is not. But that didn't stop Tara Gondek from taking the plunge and opening her own bridal boutique in Anchorage last fall.
Alumni Spotlight: Marvat Obeidi
On the water, she’s a paddleboard entrepreneur. On the rink, she drops derby opponents to their kneepads. And in the classroom, Marvat Obeidi is a role model for her multilingual students—like them, she grew up in Anchorage between two cultures, two languages and the culture shock of being a first-generation Alaskan.
Alumni Spotlight: Rahab Kiruku
She moved from a bucolic suburb of Nairobi 12 years ago to study nursing at UAA and emerged four years later with a hard-won bachelor's degree. Now she's a registered nurse at Providence Alaska Medical Center. Meet Rahab Kiruku.
Alumni Spotlight: Brandon Wood
UAA alumnus Brandon Wood ran his first Crow Pass Crossing last year. He talks here about his three-year path to that torturous race.
Alumni Spotlight: Leda Garside
Award-winning nurse Leda Garside brings her mobile medical clinic rolling through the valleys and vineyards of Oregon's wine country, seeking to provide much-needed health care and support to the state's migrant workers.
Alumni Spotlight: Tim Coe
After a low-income childhood where the McDonald’s drive-thru seemed like an out-of-reach luxury, Tim now oversees budgets of up to $80 million as a project engineer.