The Lord watches over His flock continually
Because the student workers of the Polynesian Cultural Center are both an integral part of our operations and an even bigger part of our thoughts and prayers, many of us have been interested in knowing how they are, what they are experiencing, and continue to hope that they are being blessed and protected by the Lord’s hand.
I was contacted this weekend by some dear friends of us all, Chris and Debbie King, who headed up the Strategic Development and Research department (SDR) during their mission at the Center. They wanted to share their Aloha for a particular student employee/volunteer that has made a big difference in their department since 2016. Her name is Tsai-yi Han Chen, but everyone calls her Linda. With the King’s encouragement, I contacted her.
“I am from Taiwan, and my husband, Kenney, is from China,” Linda shared. “I have two younger sisters, and he has a sister. We are both converts to the Church. Our mothers are the pioneers in the families. They brought us to the Church and helped us learn the Gospel.”
“I never thought to come to BYUH until I was (in) 12th grade. The temple president and matron at that time recommended that I try applying to BYUH after attending one of the temple sessions.
My English was so bad in high school that my tests just barely passed F. However, I felt inspired and wanted to try after that day. I self-taught and read many English books. After one year of effort, I was admitted to the school. I went to BYUH in Fall, 2012, and then President Monson announced a lower age requirement for missionary service in Oct 2012. My friends and I all decided to go on our missions.
I met some old friends here after I came back in Spring 2016. I majored in Psychology and have several minors. I graduated in June 2019.”
“Kenny (who worked in the Center’s accounting department) and I met here in BYUH. We were introduced by our friends. We dated for a year and have been married for almost two years now.”
As you can see from the photos, the Chens have recently welcomed their baby, Clara, into their family.
Chris King wanted to share a list of some of her many accomplishments:
- Singlehandedly running our SDR staff meetings since Alyssa Julia Caduada left for the mainland;
- A part of SDR when Alan Walker left on his mission, and there to greet him and re-orient him when he came home;
- Being the statistical backbone of our department along with Uncle Del;
- Kept our Axper people counting cameras in the HMP running, our beam counters at the Ukulele experience and Pacific Football HOF, and tire counters in the parking lot;
- Conducted numerous research studies such as determining guest satisfaction with the new luau show;
- Helped analyze the new Huki lagoon show;
- Translated our guest cards and guest survey into Chinese;
- Typed in Kokua cards so we could send surveys;
- Coordinated with professors at BYUH for student research projects;
- Managed our guest satisfaction surveys for Pounders, Farm Tours, and the new Holoholo canoe tours;
- Analyzed guest comments;
- Produced reports for the Laie Tram tour and DOMO reports for management; and
- Created new Power BI reports.
As happens with our international students, this fall, Linda’s work visa was expiring. The Kings share that there has been a lot of struggle and work to get their visas in order. For a time, it looked like Linda might have to leave Hawaii while Kenny stayed here. There have been many prayers and efforts to keep that from happening. Joyfully, Kenny just received his visa last week – so all of them will be leaving Laie soon for Taiwan.
“It is a wonderful experience, and for sure, it’s a blessing to work in PCC with all my colleagues,” Linda said. “I began my first job with BYUH custodians, and then I worked in Seasider for another semester. I started working in the SDR Department in December 2016. From 2016 to 2020, I have been working with 15 different colleagues. They are all blessings to my life. I have learned different things from each of them.”
We congratulate Linda for a job well done, thank her for her dedication and positivity, and wish her and her beautiful family happy journeys and much success back home.