n 2018, Tina Jang moved from Taiwan to Virginia with her husband Jackson in hopes of reconnecting with his family.  The couple’s plan- to settle down in Virginia.

“We were both unsure how things would unfold after leaving the familiarity of Taiwan,” said Jang.  (Jang is pictured in the front row, third from the right wearing an orange cardigan.)

With the help of her family and the community, she was referred to the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center (SVHEC).  While earning two CompTIA certifications through her studies at the SVHEC’s IT Academy, Jang was the recipient of a Microsoft scholarship offered through the Southern Virginia Higher Education Foundation (SVHEF).  The Microsoft scholarship allowed her the opportunity to expand her career possibilities.  Then a half a year later, Jang was hired as a full-time employee with Microsoft.

“Things are working out so wonderfully,” Jang expressed with relief of launching a career so quickly.

Jang delivered her sincere gratitude to the SVHEF Board of Directors and Scholarship Committee in a letter with a check for $1,350.00.  She wanted her success to benefit future students as a way of paying-it-forward with her donation.

The letter read, “Let me express my sincere gratitude.  Thank you all for helping me with my journey here in the USA.  The scholarship I was granted has helped me tremendously.  I would like to give it back to the next student in need,” wrote Jang.

Also in her letter, Jang shared the IT Academy team was amazing.  She included a kudos to her instructor Tom Hendricks and Kelly Shotwell Director of the IT Academy at the SVHEC.

The IT Academy, a Microsoft Datacenter Academy located at the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center is currently in its eighth year.  IT Academy students benefit from access to Microsoft scholarships and internship opportunities at the Microsoft datacenter.   The IT certification-based training combines classroom instruction with hands-on labs.

“Students not only learn the ‘what’ but also the ‘how to,” said Director of IT Academy Kelly Shotwell.

Lots of praise for Tina Jang was reported by her Manager Andy Ballestracci.  He shared wonderful news regarding the ranks Jang has climbed since coming onboard at Microsoft.

“Tina has made a HUGE impact onsite since she started with Microsoft.  Some of the accomplishments to highlight are she won the first ever Collaborative Stakeholder Coin in our department for her work with numerous Pilots held at the Boydton Campus.  Another huge accomplishment has been her transition from Inventory and Asset Management (IAM) tech to Senior Technician.

“In her new role I have no doubt she will continue to show a growth mindset and have a great impact on the IAM program in Boydton,” said Ballestracci.

To learn more about the Southern Virginia Higher Education Foundation, visit them online at www.svhef.org or call 434-572-5448. The SVHEF is located 180 Factory Street in South Boston

Read the online article here.