Student Board Member

Christine Tran Selected as Next Student Member of MNPS Board of Education
Posted on 07/20/2023
Student Board Member

Christine Tran, a rising junior at the soon-to-open James Lawson High School, will be the next student member of the MNPS Board of Education. Tran_student board member

Tran was appointed after selection committee members reviewed applications and interviewed rising juniors from across the district for the position. She will join Alayna Mitchell, a rising senior at Hillsboro High School, in representing MNPS’s more than 80,000 students in 2023-24 and will succeed Abenezer Haile, who graduated last month from Martin Luther King Jr. Academic Magnet High School.

Tran, who will serve a two-year term on the Board until she graduates in 2025, started the Asian Youth Club to celebrate Asian culture at Hillwood High School, which closed recently as James Lawson High School prepares to open with the start of the 2023-24 school year. She will continue to lead the new club at James Lawson.

Tran also has tutored younger students and has participated in Model United Nations, Youth in Government, the Hillwood band and the debate team.

“I want to make an impact on my community and speak up for those who can't speak up for themselves,” Tran said. “And so I thought this position would be the perfect way to do so. I'm excited to have been selected and look forward to representing my peers.”

The Board of Education started appointing student members again in 2021-22, starting with Angelie Quimbo, who was a senior that year and now attends Duke University, and Haile, who was a junior and now is getting ready to start college at New York University. Mitchell joined Haile on the Board in 2022.

Student board members hold non-voting positions but can weigh in during Board discussions and debates. Tran’s first meeting will be in September.

"I am so thrilled to welcome Christine Tran to the school board,” Mitchell said. “Christine is a dedicated and energetic leader who has proven to be a problem-solver within her school community. I believe that Christine will continue the meaningful work that Abenezer has done while also bringing in a fresh, new perspective. I'm sure Christine will do great things during her time on the school board, and I can't wait to start working with her!”

“We had a wonderful amount of candidates from every corner of our district come and interview with us,” Haile said. “Each candidate made me more proud of MNPS and how many future leaders it’s helping enrich every day. Christine specifically had a strong passion for leadership, and her past experiences of rising against adversity with her innovative ideas made it clear how much more impact and progress she could make if given the right platform. I’m extremely excited with the idea of her and Alayna working together next year and more than glad to see what Angelie and I had started two years ago being continued with the brightest people.”

Board Member Abigail Tylor led the selection committee, which ultimately interviewed four finalists before selecting Tran.

“We had strong applicants from across the district, and the selection committee had a difficult time narrowing it down,” Tylor said. “I'm delighted by the many determined students I met during this process and am looking forward to maintaining connections while they also work to improve both MNPS and Nashville. Our final four came from each quadrant of MNPS. Abenezer and Alayna were involved in every step of the process, and their input was critical in the final decision.

“Our prior student board members have set the bar high, and I'm excited to see how Christine and Alayna will collaborate to continue that excellent work. Christine is passionate about representing student voices and has practical problem-solving experience in how to make changes. I'm looking forward to supporting her in this role!”

Director of Schools Dr. Adrienne Battle said she’s looking forward to working with Tran and seeing what she’ll bring to Board discussions.

“I’m excited to welcome Christine to the Board and look forward to watching her grow into the position and match the passion and insight of her predecessors in the months and years ahead,” Dr. Battle said. “I know she and Alayna will capture and represent the voices of our wonderfully talented, skilled and diverse student body.”

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