WHS grad selected to visit, learn about, China

By Desiree Laws Moore

In October, Shannon Trammell, a 2002 graduate of Woodbridge High School, received notification that she was nominated as a delegate to the 2003 International Mission on Business in China, sponsored by the National Youth Leadership Forum. She and 80 other young people from across the nation will travel for 17 days behind the scenes of four major Chinese business centers. Trammell, now a freshman at Delaware State University, was recognized because of her “exemplary leadership, outstanding academic performance, and commitment to a career in business.” Her major is hospitality and tourism management. “I did not know what to think when I first found out because there are so many people trying to scam college students,” said Trammell. “My mom and I did some research on the Internet and found out that it was legitimate.” “I am really excited,” Trammell continued. “I can’t wait to see the botanical gardens, the Great Wall, and since I am a hospitality major, taste the different foods in China.” On her 17-day adventure, Trammell will go to Beijing, Nanjing, Suzhou and Shanghai. She will have the opportunity to explore international business, economics and trade relations. While in China’s capital city, Beijing, Trammell will be able to attend a private meeting with officials of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation and the World Organization Institute. She will also explore some of the ancient treasures including the Great Wall, the Forbidden City and Tian’anmen Square and sample authentic Chinese cuisine, opera and theater. Nanjing is an important industrial city for China. Trammell will learn how business educators at Nanjing University are training future leaders. The city of Suzhou is known as the City of Silk and Gardens, and she will attend a reception with government officials there. Shanghai is fast becoming the financial center for all of China. While there, Trammell will be an observer at the Shanghai Stock Exchange and meet analysts and traders. The group of students will be the honored guests of the U.S. Consulate and will discuss ways to increase business operations between the U.S. and China. The only roadblock to Trammell taking full advantage of this experience is the tuition cost of $4,225. The tuition covers transportation, lodging, meals, tips and taxes, baggage and group insurance. Trammell was initially told that one of the departments at Delaware State University would be able to sponsor her trip, but grant money that would have been used is no longer available. Now, she and her family are forced to raise the tuition themselves, which has been a challenge. “The biggest challenge is that it has come so unexpectedly,” said Karen Doakes, Trammell’s mother. “There is a possibility that we will be moving at the end of the school year, and then there is Christmas, and this $4,000 is definitely not in our budget. “We were so excited when we first read the letter. Shannon did a great job in high school, and she is getting this recognition because of all that she did in a leadership capacity. We’ve always been involved in her school experiences but I had no idea that she had the leadership capabilities that she does until I saw her in action. She has paved the way for a lot of kids in her school and I guess until now I really did not realize the importance of all that she did. I really hope that she is able to go to China and experience all this trip has to offer.” The deadline for paying the tuition is Jan. 13. An “A” student at Woodbridge High School, Trammell was also senior class president and band president. She was named to the Who’s Who Among American High School Students for two years, belonged to the National Honor Roll and Spanish National Honor Society, and was treasurer for the Business Professionals of America (BPA). In her senior year, she placed first in the state in the BPA basic office procedures and systems competition and could have gone to Chicago for the national competition but her school district was unable to pay for the trip. This year, Trammell is a member of the DSU band. Trammell left quite an impression on staff and students at Woodbridge. “Shannon is a mature young woman, who balanced academics, athletics and community activities,” said Karen Heyd, her guidance counselor last year. “She is devoted to her family and is a good role model for her younger sisters.” “With all the people I was acquainted with in high school, I just started wanting to help people and that led into organizing projects and activities,” Trammell said. “Just about everything that I was involved with had something to do with helping people. I also have had family members that influenced me a lot. My grandmother, Phyllis Trammell, my uncle, Henry Nutter for all his service on Seaford’s City Council, and my mom have been very influential to me.” She is the daughter of Karen and Arthur Doakes of Bridgeville and Andre Trammell of Wilmington. An account has been set up at Wilmington Trust for Trammell. Donations to help pay for her trip to China may be sent to Maribeth Toumberlin at Wilmington Trust, 670 N. Dual Highway, Seaford with a notation “For the benefit of Shannon Trammell.”

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