Two named to All-WA Academic Team

Two Centralia College students will be honored March 24 as members of the 2016 All-Washington Academic Team. The formal ceremony will be held at noon at South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia. Governor Jay Inslee will be the featured speaker.

Centralia College’s representatives are Emily Allen and Lee Taylor. They were selected based on their academic achievement, community involvement, and service to the college.

“Both Emily and Lee are exceptional students,” said Dr. Jim Walton, Centralia College president. “Though they are both very different people, they are united by their love of math, science, and engineering, and their commitment to lifelong learning and the mission of Centralia College. I’m honored to recognize them as members of the All-Washington Academic Team.”

The 65 members of this year’s All-Washington Academic Team represent all 34 community and technical colleges in Washington. Each student will receive a $250 scholarship from KeyBank.

Emily Allen mugEmily Allen
Even as a young child, Emily Allen, 18, of Centralia, loved designing, diagnosing, and fixing household items, and longed to understand their inner workings. In fact, at age 9, she declared at the dinner table her intention to become a mechanical engineer.

She is now actively pursuing that dream at Centralia College, where she is working towards a degree in mechanical engineering. She also serves as a peer tutor for a number of math and science classes and is an active member of the Applied Physics and Engineering Club. She has a 4.0 grade point average.

Emily was also named a 2016 Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Gold Scholar. Her selection was based on scores she earned in the All-USA Community College Academic Team competition, for which more than 1,900 applications were received this year. This program is sponsored by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and is administered by Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.  Emily will be recognized at the 2016 Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Scholars Annual Convention in April in National Harbor, MD. 

Lee Taylor mugLee Taylor
Needing to support his family at an early age, Lee Taylor, now 36, of Chehalis, dropped out of high school to work in the retail sector. Over 14 years, he worked his way into management, but his lack of a high school diploma began holding him back.

In 2012, he earned his GED from Centralia College. By the time he finished, he was inspired to reconnect with his dream of a college degree and a career in engineering. Taylor is currently working towards a degree in mechanical engineering. He has a 4.0 grade point average.

For more information about Centralia College, visit


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