Photo of the first cadre of Saint Martin's Act Six Scholars
March 14, 2019

Lacey, Wash. –  Saint Martin’s University has selected its first cadre of Act Six Scholars. In 2018, Saint Martin’s joined Gonzaga University, Northwest University, Pacific Lutheran University and Whitworth University to become the fifth college partner in the Tacoma-Seattle Act Six network. As an Act Six partner, Saint Martin’s will provide full-tuition, full-need scholarships for a cohort of seven diverse urban leaders from across the Puget Sound each year.

“Saint Martin’s is very excited to be part of this leadership program and to work with this amazing group of students next year,” says Saint Martin’s dean of enrollment Pamela Holsinger-Fuchs, Ph.D. “We’re also excited about the things they will accomplish in their lives as Saints!”

The Act Six network is a leadership development and scholarship initiative led by Degrees of Change that identifies, trains and supports the region’s most promising urban students as transformative campus and community leaders.

“Act Six Scholars must complete a rigorous, three-phase evaluation process that requires multiple essays, academic assessments, group activities and interviews,” says Rebecca Byrne, senior admissions counselor. “Our Cadre One was carefully selected from a pool of accomplished young leaders. It was an honor to learn the compelling stories and unique perspectives that these students shared. The seven scholars were selected for their distinctive points of view, their ability to overcome obstacles, their passion for their communities and their vision to meet the world’s deep needs. We could not be more proud to call this group Saints!”

The first cadre of Saint Martin’s Act Six Scholars are:

Reine Albite, from Olympia, who will graduate from Pope John Paul II High School, in Lacey, and will major in civil engineering.

Jolie Bwiza, from Masisi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, who is graduating from Stadium High School, in Tacoma, and will major in social work.

Asma Ibrahim, from Tukwila, who will graduate from Federal Way High School, in Federal Way, and will major in biology.

Katherine Jamerson, from Tacoma, who is graduating from Franklin Pierce High School, in Tacoma, and will major in business administration.

Jose Armando Jurado Beltran, from Paracho, Mexico, who will graduate from Washington High School, in Tacoma, and will major in nursing.

Elvis Knight, from Nairobi, Kenya, who is graduating from Tacoma Science and Math Institute, in Tacoma, and will major in social work.

Tina Ngo, from Burien, who will graduate from Highline High School, in Burien, and will major in nursing.

Act Six is a cohort-based, leadership development and scholarship program develops urban leaders to be agents of transformation on campus and in their home communities. Since the program's inception in 2002, more than 800 ethnically diverse and mostly first-generation, low-income Act Six scholarship recipients from Tacoma, Seattle, Yakima and Spokane; Portland, Oregon; Minneapolis-St Paul, Minnesota; Chicago, Illinois; and Indianapolis, Indiana, have enrolled at thirteen private colleges and universities.

While 87% of Act Six Scholars come from low-income families or are the first generation in their family to attend college, 82% percent earn their bachelor’s degrees within six years, more than doubling the rate for low-income, first-generation students nationwide. Nearly two-thirds of the program’s graduates are working or serving back in their home communities and among alumni who have been out of college for three or more years, 31% have earned a post-graduate degree or credential. Learn more about Act Six at

Saint Martin’s University is an independent, four-year, coeducational university located on a wooded campus of more than 300 acres in Lacey, Washington. Established in 1895 by the Catholic Order of Saint Benedict, the University is one of 14 Benedictine colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and the only one west of the Rocky Mountains. Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 25 majors and ten graduate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education, nursing and engineering. Saint Martin’s welcomes more than 1,300 undergraduate students and 250 graduate students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its Lacey campus, and more students to its extended campus located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

For additional information:

Pamela Holsinger-Fuchs, Ph.D.
Dean of Enrollment

Rebecca Byrne
Senior Admissions Counselor

Kevin Hyde
Media Relations Manager