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TCC announces 2022 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Awards

Faculty member Annette Mewborn with student Jiahuan Lin.

Tidewater Community College honors the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by presenting annual awards to those who embody his teachings and spirit.

The 2022 recipients are:

  • Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Distinguished Service Award: Annette Mewborn, English professor at the Virginia Beach Campus.
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Award: Jiahuan Lin, a TCC student working toward her Associate of Science in General Studies.

The two will be honored during the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Virtual Awards and Recognition Program on Feb. 25 from noon to 1:30 p.m. Register for the event.

William Harrell, President and CEO of Hampton Roads Transit

The featured speaker is William E. Harrell, President and CEO of Hampton Roads Transit. Harrell will speak on “Why is Martin Luther King Jr’s legacy relevant today?”

Annette Mewborn
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Distinguished Service Award

Annette Mewborn is passionate about bringing people together and serving the community.

The English professor, who began working at the Virginia Beach Campus admissions office, joined the college in 1989. For close to a decade, Mewborn organized Black History Month events on the Virginia Beach Campus to celebrate African American history and culture. The events included programs like “From the Root of It,” a look at hairstyles through the ages, as well as a historical review of “Motown Music.”

Her long list of accomplishments includes starting a tutoring center for children at Rehoboth Baptist Church. She set up the center and recruited volunteers to teach English, writing, music and Spanish.

Pre-pandemic, Mewborn presented 12 holiday concerts at TCC with Echoes of Excellence, a group of students with a love for music. Together they packed the Pungo Auditorium year after year. She also established High Class, an educational band that writes and performs songs for youth at community events.

Most recently, Mewborn organized a toy drive and holiday concert for abused children through her work with CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates). The outdoor event was held in Mewborn’s own backyard.

And during the pandemic, she started The Novel Kids, a reading program for children to keep them engaged and learning in the summer months.

“I believe in peace and unity, and the tenets Dr. King held dear,” Mewborn said. “If you look at some of his most influential quotes, you see one word that mirrors the Bible and that is love. That’s how I strive to live my life. By loving my neighbor, wherever I am.”

Jiahuan Lin
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Award

Community service has become a way of life for Jiahuan Lin. She began volunteering in high school and has no intention of slowing down.

Lin,18, holds a 4.0 GPA and is working on an Associate of Science in General Studies.

An Outstanding High School Scholar, Lin serves as a TCC student ambassador and represents the college at open houses and other events for new and prospective students. She is also vice president of TCC CARES, a student engagement club designed to help the community and the environment through service projects. Additionally, she serves the Virginia Beach Campus as vice president of the Student Government Association.

Lin has also been active in the community during the COVID-19 pandemic working with Virginia Beach Medical Reserve Corps during pop-up vaccination clinics. While there, she helped with medical records and monitoring patients.

“Community service benefits not just the one who receives the service, but also the one who does it,” she said. “It is also a way to connect with others and gain enormous amounts of knowledge that you could not learn in school.”