Malee Alway

Success Story

St. Charles Community College student Malee Alway, 50, received a statewide Breaking Traditions Award – the postsecondary/adult Daphna Jones Spirit Award. The award is presented to a person who exemplifies an unbreakable spirit, has overcome undue hardships, braved harsh obstacles, stood courageously against troubles and has had the tenacity to surpass all the odds. 

Malee is a “triple” nontraditional student – she’s a woman and a returning learner and was born outside of the U.S. She came to the U.S. from Thailand when she was 19 years old. In the spring of 2011, Malee enrolled in the Computer-Aided Drafting Program at SCC. Her grade point average is 3.85, and she is one of just seven SCC students who passed the Certified SolidWorks Associate Examination. Her instructor David Niermann said, “Her dedication, high work ethic and thoroughness greatly exceed the typical student performance in our program.” She received the overall third place award in the annual CAD student exhibit this year. 

Malee is already working on an externship with Schneider Electric IT. Her supervisor, Dan Rohr, commented that he is “not surprised about Malee’s Breaking Traditions Award. We have seen her tenacity for perfection, neatness and desire to get the most of any task that she touches. I am very impressed with the skills she has in SolidWorks.” Malee’s future plan is to complete the CAD Program and receive an Associate of Applied Science degree by the end of 2014 at SCC.

As an award winner she receives scholarships from SCC and the Foundation for Missouri Women.

The Breaking Traditions Awards honor students, educators and employers for their achievements related to nontraditional careers.

Since 1994, Missouri Breaking Traditions Awards have honored outstanding students who have chosen specific career and technical education programs based on their interests and abilities, and who have not let their gender influence their career decisions. The awards are sponsored by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Regional Career Education Coordinators.

Last updated: June 18, 2013 

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