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Our Staff

TRIO Programs

Kyle Ethelbah

Kyle Ethelbah, MPH
Director of University of Utah TRIO programs

Hometown: Whiteriver, AZ
Study Areas: BA, Anthropology; Master Public Health-Health Promotion 
Languages Other Than English: Spanish & Western Apache 
About TRIO: TRIO has been a big part of my overall growth and development. Despite the hardships I have faced, TRIO staff always showed compassion and expert guidance in my lifetime. Because of TRIO I started my career in higher education and I'm very grateful that I did!
Hobbies/Interests: Taking dogs to dog parks, especially ones where they can run and enjoy the water.
Interesting Fact: Once officiated a wedding in Red Rock Canyon, Nevada.

Contact Kyle Ethelbah Set appointment

 Makena staff photo

MaKena Christiansen
Administrative Assistant of Utah TRIO programs


Hometown: North Logan, UT
Study Areas: BA, Anthropology and History
Languages Other Than English: Sarcasm
Hobbies/Interests: I love movies, music, hiking, and eating pizza.
Interesting Fact: I got a concussion while swimming.


contact MaKena christiansen

Upward Bound (UB)


Emery Vigil
Student Success Program Manager

Hometown: West Jordan/Kearns
Study Areas:
 Communication and Education
Languages Other Than English: 
I speak the Language of Love
About TRIO:
TRIO gives students a pathway to success. A favorite quote of mine is “to be educated is to be able to see yourself as you are now and imagine something different” –Tara Westover. I like being part of an organization that allows students to grow and see themselves taking on roles they previously had only dreamed about. Our students will break down barriers and become future leaders to other young people and the community.
Hobbies/Interests: Hiking, cooking, reading, traveling, history
Interesting Fact: I like fish. I’ve kept a pet fish since graduate school. I would put my fish’s tank on my kitchen table and have dinner with him every night.

contact emergy vigil

Kenny Quintanilla

Kenny Quintanilla
Coordinator for Curriculum & Instruction

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA 
Study Areas: BA, Geography, Spanish and MS Teaching and Learning
Languages Other Than English: Espaňol
About TRIO: I love the Annex and working with an array of students.
Hobbies/Interests: movies, Lakers & Liverpool FC fan, futbol, basketball, cartography and hiking
Interesting Fact: I write poetry and I've been to over half of the 50 states.

Contact Kenny Quintanilla


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Derek Greer
Upward Bound Mentor

Hometown: Santiago, Chile
Study Areas: Mechanical Engineering BS, Japanese Minor, applying for Neuroinformatics MS.
Languages Other Than English: Spanish, Japanese.
Hobbies/Interests: I've played guitar since pretty young and recently picked up the piano. Love hiking so I travel as much as possible, which is a great excuse to do landscape photography and astrophotography (when camping). When at home I cook, play games on PC and read books (usually sci-fi, fantasy, or slice-of-life light novels).
Interesting Fact: I've been to 14 countries!




Kushal Gautam
Upward Bound Mentor

Hometown: Kathmandu, Nepal
Study Areas: Computer Science
Languages Other Than English: Nepalese/Nepali
Hobbies/Interests: Drawing, doodles, and music playlist.
Interesting Fact: I dislike butterflies.


Student Support Services (SSS)

Tony Lam 2

Tony Lam, PhD
Math Instructor

Hometown: Boise Idaho
Study Areas: Statistics and Probability
Languages Other Than English: 1 community college class in Mandarin Chinese; a childhood grwoing up hearing Taishanese and Cantonese.
Hobbies/Interests: Pinball, jigsaw puzzles, star gazing, and cooking.
Interesting Fact: I have been to Hong Kong three times. I could have been born there: my mom (who is not Chinese) visited when she was pregnant, but I was born 4 months later.


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Donna Jordan-Allen
Coordinator for Academic Support and Instruction (SSS)

Hometown: the original Las Vegas in New Mexico 
Study Areas: Social Work (BSW), Graduate Candidate: Guidance & Counseling, Education Department
Languages Other Than English: Understands "un poquito Espaňol"
About TRIO: Seeing the huge smile on my students face upon achieving their goal 
Hobbies/Interests: Spending time with my Lord and loved ones, arts/crafts, being outdoors (especially the mountains, waterfalls), Danielle Steel books, movies, horseback riding, going for long walks, going for wood, having gatherings and entertaining guests, writing love letters, cooking and baking especially for loved ones, remembering special occasions, learning about my family history, lending a helping hand, making people laugh, I am a Bears, Lakers, Pirates, NMHU Cowboys, RHS Cardinals, Utah Utes and Utah Rugby fan. I enjoy golf with my son and music with my daughter.
Interesting Facts: I have two adult children, 4 siblings: twin brothers, younger brother and younger sister. My parents and brothers are Marines, the youngest retired. I had 2 pet alligators when younger. I would like to visit each state with my children, buy my own home, take my mom to the Holy Lands, take my pops to visit my aunties, restore a '57 Chevy pickup like my pops had, sponsor a scholarship in my children's name. I was the recipient of the Perlman Award

Contact Donna Jordan-Allen Set appointment


Luis Lopez 
Student Success Program Manager

Hometown:  Santa Ana, CA
Study Areas:  B.A. in Latin American Studies w/ minor in Chicano Studies. M.Ed. in Educational Leadership & Policy with emphasis in Student Affairs.
Languages Other Than English: Spanish, Spanglish and some Nahuatl
About TRIO:  There is no greater feeling as a first-generation college graduate than guiding others along their academic journey. Each one, teach one!
Hobbies/Interests: Collecting records, traveling, Mesoamerican culture, and making beats. 
Interesting Fact: “Rap is something you do, hip hop something you live!” – KRS ONE

Contact Luis Lopez Set appointment phone: 801-581-7188

Janet Reyes

Janet Reyes
Graduate Assistant for Academic Success - SSS

Hometown: Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico
Study Areas:
Psychology major, Sociology minor, and a Certificate in Positive Psychology
Languages Other Than English
About TRIO
I love how the TRIO Program creates a welcoming environment for each student. I enjoy being part of the Navigation Team at TRIO because it gives me the opportunity to do what I really love, which is helping, supporting, and motivating first-generation college students to accomplish their dreams and goals in life. Also, being a TRIO SSS participant, I have the opportunity to make connections on campus, meet new people, and use all the resources that TRIO offers to students. When I started joining the TRIO Programs at Salt Lake Community College, my journey became full of blessings. I just can say that TRIO will always be there for you whenever you need help. In your academic journey, you will not walk by yourself; you will have all the TRIO staff by your side supporting, guiding, and helping you to achieve your dreams.
I love dancing bachata, cumbia, and merengue (sometimes salsa too). Also, I love playing basketball, traveling, and hiking.
Interesting Facts:
I was raised in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. I lived there for 15 years. Also, I played basketball on my school team for about 6 years.

contact Janet Reyes

SSS Student Staff


Osvaldo Rios
Student Office Assistant

Hometown: Salt Lake City
Study Areas: Kinesology
Languages Other Than English: Spanish
About TRIO: I like the inviting space that the office provides. 
Hobbies/Interests: Soccer, Chivas de Guadalajara fan
Interesting Facts: I broke one bone, guess which which one it was?

Moises staff photo

Moises Santiago
Student Office Assistant

Hometown: Kearns, UT
Study Areas: Psychology
Languages Other Than English: Spanish
About TRIO: I like the welcoming environment the TRIO office staff provide.
Hobbies/Interests: Community service, movies, and camping.
Interesting Facts: I own a cat named Simba, first generation.

Wendy staff photo

Wendy Vazquez
Student Navigator

Hometown: Mexico City, Mexico
Study Areas:
Psychology and Criminology
Languages Other Than English:
About TRIO: Working with students, seeing them grow and accomplish their goals as well as seeing them overcome their every day life challenges. Just one of the many rewarding experiences of working in higher ed.
Hobbies/Interests: I enjoy new experiences, listening to new music, exploring new places and learning new things.
Interesting Facts: I went to Japan for a whole summer by myself.

contact wendy vazquez

Last Updated: 7/13/21