Asian Pacific American Student Services

Asian Pacific American Student Services | 3645 E. Pima, Tucson, AZ 85716 (Catalina High School) | (520) 232-8614 | Email Us

Asian Pacific American Student Services

APASS Staff
From left: Rachel Sanchez, Masbil Bulale, Leonard Muhunga, Tsuru Bailey Jones, Bac Dinh, Lydia Sahyouni, Hem Gajmer, Wadiah Sarah, Joyce Tominaga, Amina Hussein, Narapati Subedi, Ndabibonye Desire

Staff Contacts

Jimmy Hart - Interim Director of APASS and Refugee Services

Rachel Sanchez, Administrative Assistant

photo of Rachel SanchezRachel.Sanchez@tusd1.org

My name Rachel Sanchez. I born and raised in Tucson, Arizona.

I graduated from Cholla High School in 1994. I started working for TUSD at the age of 16 as a student helper. Since then I have worked for various departments, such as Library Services, K-3 program, Curriculum and Instruction, Mexican American Studies, Title 1 and now Asian Pacific American Student Services.

When not at work, I enjoy spending time with my family and taking pictures.

Ndabibonye Desire, Student Success Specialist

photo of Ndabibonye DesireNdabibonye.Desire@tusd1.org or (520) 406-7419

My name is Ndabibonye Desire, and I am a Student Success Specialist for Kirundi, Swahili and French speakers.

I taught high school math for seven years in a refugee camp in Tanzania, Africa. I have been in TUSD since 2010 helping students in their math classes, interpreting for parents and translating district forms and letters.

I enjoy helping students and families so they can make a difference in their lives.

If you need any assistance, please contact me through email or by phone.

Bac Dinh, Student Success Specialist

photo of Bac DinhBac.Dinh@tusd1.org or (520) 232-8614

My name is Bac Dinh. I am a Vietnamese Student Success Specialist for Asian Pacific American Student Services, TUSD.

My work involves monitoring Asian students' academic studies as well as helping their parents collaborate with the school to promote student success. Like a bridge, I try hard to span the gap between the school and the parents.

My 17-year teaching experience has helped me a lot in this job.

I also advocate for the Vietnamese Alliance Community with organizing free classes for U.S citizenship and cultural activities.

Should you be in need of my assistance, please call me or email me.

Hem Gajmer, Student Success Specialist

photo of Hem GajmerHem.Gajmer@tusd1.org

My name is Hem Gajmer, Student Success Specialist, working in Asian Pacific American Student Services and Refugee Services, TUSD.

I was born in the Thunder Dragon kingdom of Bhutan, situated in the great Himalayan range bordered by Tibet in the north and India in the south. I grew up in the country of Mount Everest, "Nepal", as a refugee for 18 years.

I have been in Tucson since 2009. I served as a science teacher in Bhanubhakta Memorial Higher Secondary School, Kathmandu, Nepal for three years.

I enjoy helping students to come forward with their new ideas and always take pride in learning opportunities.

Amina Hussein, Student Success Specialist

photo of Amina HusseinAmina.Hussein@tusd1.org

My name is Amina Hussein. I was born in Mogadishu, Somalia and grew up in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

I am the second oldest in my family. I have been in Tucson, Arizona since January 2013. I initially attended Rincon High School when I first arrived.

I worked on getting my high school diploma for the first year and worked as part time care giver to also help the family.

In 2014, I graduated from high school and enrolled in Pima Community College. Now I am a part time student majoring in Elementary Education. I speak Somali, Arabic and English.

Yoon Lee, Student Success Specialist

photo of Yoon LeeYoon.Lee@tusd1.org

Hi, my name is Yoon Lee. I was born in Seoul, Korea and came to US as a sophomore in college. I have majored in elementary education with communication at SUNY-New Paltz and have worked as a classroom teacher in a various schools. My family has moved to Tucson 8 years ago due to my husband’s work at University of Arizona. I love working with students and happy to join in TUSD to work as a student success specialist.

Leonard Muhunga, Student Success Specialist

photo of Leonard MuhungaLeonard.Muhunga@tusd1.org

My name is Leonard Muhunga. I am married and father of four children. I was born in the landlocked small country of Burundi, located on the Northeastern shoreline of Lake Tanganyika. Burundi is a very mountainous beautiful country. I enjoyed studying, working and living in my homeland.

Back home I worked as a judge at Residential Court. In 2000, I unfortunately had to leave my beautiful country due to war and political situations. I lived in Namibia for 12 years in Osire refugee Camp. In the camp I first worked as French and social studies teacher, grade four teachers and Sexual and Reproductive Health Coordinator. I also served as Gender Equality Promoter, SGBV Task Force member and as a Deputy Chair person of the Refugee committee.

I arrived in USA since June 2013 and joined the department of APASS since November of the same year to now. I enjoy working as a Student Success Specialist.

Lydia Sahyouni, Student Success Specialist

photo of Lydia SahyouniLydia.Sahyouni@tusd1.org

I was born in Lattakia, a beautiful city by the Mediterranean Sea, in Syria.

I earned a Bachelor degree in Engineering of Agriculture, worked as a teacher in a public school for a while, then with export/import for the Minister of Foods and Drugs. I left Syria to go to France for higher education. I speak, read and write Arabic and French. I then moved to the United States of America and worked for many organizations helping families.

Currently, I enjoy working as a Student Success Specialist in the Refugee Services Department. My goal is to make a difference in people's lives by advocating and finding the best resources out there.

Wadiah Sarah, Student Success Specialist

photo of Wadiah SarahWadiah.Sarah@tusd1.org

I am Wadiah Sarah. I am a Student Success Specialist /Arabic Translator.

I was born and raised in Syria.

My husband and I immigrated to the United States in 1974.

I have been working for TUSD Language Acquisition/Refugee department for the last eleven years, and I enjoy what I do.

I always tell my students, "The sky is your limit, reach for it!"

Narapati Subedi, Student Success Specialist

Photo of Narapati SubediNarapati.Subedi@tusd1.org

I'm Narapati Subedi, Student Success Specialist for Nepali speaking Bhutanese students, working at Asian Pacific American Student Services and Refugee Services in TUSD.

I spent 16 years in a Bhutanese Refugee Camp in Nepal and worked as an assistant head master, resource teacher and counselor in the camp schools.

I have been in Tucson since 2008.

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