San Jose, CA. – July 25, 2016 – On Friday evening, July 22, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Zack Pinto won the title of California State Ambassador at the California State Youth Accolades Scholarship Competition. He is also the recipient of a $10,000 scholarship. For his on stage talent he performed a Jazz solo to “Right Hand Man” from the musical Hamilton. The competition finals took place on Thursday & Friday, July 21-22 at the Santa Clara Convention Center.
Zack is 20 years old and a Senior at the University of Southern California where he is majoring in Occupational Therapy. He will achieve his doctorate in 6 years. He is also a Dance Minor, having danced since he was 6 years old. Zack plans to be a Pediatric Occupational Therapist and work with children with disabilities such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, and Cerebral Palsy. He wants to incorporate dance into his therapy practice to improve the motor development and self-expression abilities of these young people.
Zack is an active member of the student body. He is the Director of Alumni Relations and New Member Class President of Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity, Director of Xpressions Dance Company, Student Advisory Board Member for the Kaufman School of Dance, Lab Assistant at the USC Language Center, and Greek Life Crossing (Christian organization). He is in the Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Trojans Scholars Society, and is a Presidential Scholar (receiving a half tuition scholarship).
With a passion for community service, Zack created an organization called “Move to the Beat of Your Heart,” where he taught dance to kids with special needs. The organization emphasizes motor development and it helps improve self-confidence in the kids. “Move to the Beat of Your Heart” is an outlet for these children to express themselves outside of a school environment. In addition, Zack brings his dance background into other community service activities such as the Junior Blind Olympics, Trojan Dance Marathon, and the USC Songfest.