2022 Scholarship Award Winners

Jun 2022 | Community Involvement, Credit Union News

Alaska Air Group Credit Union offers scholarships to benefit members and their families. The purpose of this scholarship program is to recognize and provide financial assistance to college or trade/technical school students pursuing an education is any degree program of study.

This year, we received over 40 applications, making the selection process difficult. Applicants were rigorously reviewed by the Alaska Air Group Credit Union Scholarship Committee, and the following six students were selected for an AAGCU Scholarship Award.

Magdalena Kus-Long
Chula Vista, CA | Liberty University
Studying: Doctor of Business Administration, Executive Coaching

Magdalena has dedicated much time and energy into both her educational pursuits and community involvement from a young age. She has had a tremendous academic career including multiple Master’s Degrees and significant accolades such as earning an Honors Certificate in Global Competencies with the highest honors from San Diego Mesa College. In addition to her dedication to studies, Magdalena values volunteerism and strives to be active in her community. Significant accomplishments include: joining the Regional Development Student Association to participate in programs to prepare Poland for EU membership, volunteering at the (Minorities) Integration Bureau of State Hesse in Germany to help immigrants acclimate to their new country, volunteering at the World Peace Temple with the Volunteer Society Nepal where she worked with young monks and nuns, volunteering with the San Diego Museum of Man and the Mingei International Museum, volunteering at the San Diego VA as part of a study to help spouses of combat veterans to cope with PTSD, and finally she volunteered with employment assistance at the International Rescue Committee in San Diego to help asylum seekers write resumes and cover letters. She also volunteers with Alaska Airlines as a CARE and CIRP team member.

Magdalena is a Lead Customer Service Agent at Alaska Airlines.

Embracing change has become essential to my growth and acceptance. It pushed me to overcome obstacles, adapt, find unique solutions, and thrive. I strive to keep evolving, as there is always something to learn and take on. This adventure has brought many surprises and challenges into my life.

 Ciera Daley
Boise, ID | Idaho State University
Physician Assistant Studies

During high school and college, Ciera has prioritized academics by making the Dean’s list, and participating in several research labs in neuroscience, stress and heath, lifetime development, and positive psychology. She also played volleyball and performed on the dance team throughout high school and joined the sailing team in college.

She served as a volunteer at the Baily Boushay House in Seattle, which provided free care to the HIV positive community. She also assisted one of her professors in their practice with a local free clinic offering lifestyle medicine counseling and care.

Ciera’s mother, Catherine Daley works for Horizon Air in Boise, ID.

I found [volunteering at Baily Boushay] to be an eye-opening experience because I had little to no understanding of the inner workings of the community resources for the disadvantaged. Since then, I’ve been able to look a little deeper into local programs to see how they assist our most vulnerable populations and areas where they are lacking. Hopefully, wherever I land professionally, I will be in a position to positively influence and create new resources for the local community.

 Angela Palma
Portland, OR | University of Portland

During high school, Angela volunteered over 120 hours at Kaiser Westside Medical Center, her local hospital, as well as organized multiple blood drives for her community. She also served in a hospital on the neurovascular unit as a student nurse. She learned a lot from her volunteer work, including compassion, listening and building trust with patients, and how to demonstrate sensitivity to cultural and age differences of patients.

Angela has overcome many challenges in her life and is proud and dedicated to fulfilling her dream of being the first in her family to graduate college and become a healthcare professional.

Angela’s partner, Matthew Page works for Horizon Air.

I am driven to become a pediatric nurse practitioner who reaches out to Hispanic and Latino families and anyone who is facing mental and physical abuse. I am determined to counsel people and provide them with the appropriate mental health resources and support they need, the adequate treatment, and make it my best effort to support these children and mothers in times of need who feel isolated suffering from abuse. Currently, I am living my dream as the first to attend college and becoming a nurse.

Dawn Davis
Milton, WA | University of Alaska Southeast
Indigenous Language/Native Studies

Dawn is dedicated to studying and preserving her native culture and language through both her volunteer activities and educational pursuits. She was the co-leader of the Native Employee Network at Alaska Airlines for 2 years, and has volunteered at several events in Alaska including the Alaska Federation of Natives, community festivals, and Native Olympics. She co-sponsored the Prom Princess Program for students at Mt. Edgecumbe high school in Sitka, Alaska where they provide hair, makeup, and dresses to students to attend prom. She volunteered at the Alaska Airlines drill team at the SeaFair Parade, volunteers with West Side Baby, Treehouse, and various food banks. Finally, she is involved with several language revitalization groups to preserve indigenous languages and educate others about their language and culture.

Dawn works at Alaska Air as an Assoc Tax Accountant.

I strive to be a lifelong learner, as I developed a love for learning from a very young age. I have always pushed myself to excel at whatever course I was taking, whether that was in grade school or later in my life at college. Returning to college at the age of 48 was certainly intimidating, but I was determined to finally complete my AA. I graduated from Highline College with a 3.76 final GPA and proudly participated in Commencement with an eagle feather on my cap and a handmade red and black scarf adorned with abalone buttons that I created to highlight my heritage. When I achieved my goal of earning an AA, I considered enrolling in a bachelor’s program but was unsure which direction I should go. In the summer of 2021, I discovered that the Indigenous language program was being offered at UAS, it becomes clear to me what I had been waiting for and I again found myself excited to begin another chapter in my education journey.

Edgar Sactic
Gardena, CA | Vanguard University
Biology with Medical Concentration

Throughout high school, Edgar participated in football, soccer, and track and field and received accolades such as Express League Defensive Player of the Year and League Champion for Long Jump. He was also awarded scholar-athlete for two years in recognition of his high GPA, and has received department awards for biology, ASL and geometry.

Edgar holds the rank of Eagle Scout, which requires over 50 hours of community service, in addition to a large-scale service project requiring 30 hours of volunteering.

Edgar’s mother, Karen Ardon works for Alaska Airlines.

My long-term goal is to become a well-known, successful veterinarian and to accomplish this task requires my education to be thorough and effective. I am going to obtain a bachelor’s degree in Biology with a medical concentration. This process will take, at most, 4 years to achieve, but I know my mental toughness and study habits will allow me to acquire this goal.


Stephanie Day
Arlington, WA | Green River College
Bachelor in Aeronautical Science

Stephanie attended high school over 25 years ago, where she was involved in drama, tennis, and was Senior Class Treasurer. She achieved her AAS transfer degree after high school and began attending UW, however she quickly decided to pursue a career as a flight attendant as she didn’t have a clear vision on what she wanted to major in.

She has been actively involved in the homeschooling network, Center for Spiritual Living in Seattle, the Sedona Mago Wellness Center as a Tao Guide and at their Finding True Self retreat. She also contributes to the aviation community by volunteering at the Alaska Aviation Day, volunteering for GIFT (girls in flight training) Academy, hosting her own GIFT Academy in June 2022, and is a member of Women in Aviation, AOPA, and EAA, and she is an AFA-EAP representative.

Stephanie is a flight attendant with Horizon Air.

I am working my way through the Bachelor’s in Aeronautical Science program at Green River College. It feels good to immerse myself in aviation and learn about the different facets of the industry. Each class is like fitting another piece into the puzzle.


If you are interested to learn more about our AAGCU Scholarship, email scholarships@aagcu.org

2023 Applications will open January 1st, 2023.

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Alaska Air Group Credit Union
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(206) 824-9800
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