I am Lyn Arcangel. As the administrative assistant for the Title III program, my primary responsibilities include all administrative tasks for the program director as well as handling all procurement for the program.
I was a rebellious teenager during my high school years but somewhere I had a dream of becoming a journalist and attending the University of Oregon. But life has a way of taking unexpected turns which has probably happened to you too. My rebellious nature got the better of me and I became pregnant and a single parent. In time, I was fortunate enough to find a very supportive and loving man who accepted my daughter as his own and adopted her. We have been married for over thirty eight years and have four daughters, eight grandchildren (4 boys/4 girls pictured with my husband and me, and yes, my eldest grandson is Casey Arcangel, one of the mentors at Kaiao!) ranging from ages two years to nineteen, a dog named Randy Jackson Nakamura Spike Spot Musubi Oreo Cookie Ching…..(no, really that is his name and everyone had to have a hand in naming him). We call him Oreo… and we have a cat named Maka….(go figure). Lol. My life revolves around my family. Every Saturday night we have a family event called “Kids’ Night”. It is a potluck themed dinner with all of my daughters and their family and has become a family tradition. Some nights it is Korean, Filipino, Japanese, Hawaiian, etc. Kids’ night originated when my first three grandchildren were very young and wanted to play games after dinner which we did with the tv off. As time went on, we had to accommodate the adults as well so we have alternating nights where we watch a kids’ movie or UFC/Boxing events. Still, it is an event that has made us closer as a family and everyone loves it.
After over twenty-four years of working in the hotel industry as sales system administrator and report specialist, I was laid off as an eventual domino effect of the 9/11 attack on the United States. During those years, I had the opportunity to assist our MIS (Management Information System) department to install hardware and software and found this was something that I really enjoyed. After being unemployed for a few months, I decided to take a class to learn computer troubleshooting for the personal satisfaction of fixing my own computer. However, a close friend convinced me go for an associate’s degree in Business Technology Information Processing and in Spring of 2007, I began my journey by virtue of a Credit for Prior Learning path. This allowed me to test out on classes that my work experience, training programs and portfolio enabled me to earn credits. However, I still took all the necessary classes that were required following my educational plan under the guidance of my counselor. Attending UH Maui College gave me the opportunity to work as a student assistant at Ka Lama Computing Lab and as an intern at the UH Maui College Cooperative Education and Job Placement Office. I also was an intern for the County of Maui MIS Division which was one of my favorite jobs and included updating the County’s website and assisting at the Helpdesk troubleshooting computer challenges employees were having.
As a non-traditional student attending college, it has not been without its challenges. I became critically ill in April 2009 and was unable to complete my classes. In Spring 2010, I decided to continue working toward finishing my goal of earning my associates degree then in Fall 2011 accomplished my goal and earned my AAS Business Technology Information Processing degree.
Looking back, I have learned that it is never too late go to college in spite of life’s challenges and even when life throws diversions and distractions that you should never give up. While my dream of becoming a journalist never materialized, I found that through life’s challenges and diversions, I found new dreams and goals. I offer hope to anyone (young or old) who think they cannot do it because they can.