Deborah Bitanga

sealaska

Deborah is a 1.5 generation Filipina immigrant, moving to Kodiak at age 12. Her parents worked in the canneries, and Deborah worked hard to navigate a new language and culture. As a senior she successfully pursued the Gates Millennium Scholarship, winning full funding for undergraduate and graduate school, making her a first generation college student. She graduated from the Evergreen State College in 2019 with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Economy and Sociology, in order to better understand the context and conditions of immigrant laborers so that she could better understand her parents and her own personal story. She spent the past year working in the ELL department at the Kodiak High School, supporting youth whose stories mirrored her own. She is starting at Columbia University’s Teachers’ College to obtain her Masters in Education and Sociology. Deborah is also passionate about art and weaves her creativity into her education work.