Jacob Mclam 

YVC has given me the motivation to get kick started on what I’m passionate about and follow my dreams.

Jacob Mclam poses for picture on the stairs inside one of the YVC buildings.


Degree/Certificate & Class Year 
Associate of Applied Science Substance Use Disorder, 2025 

Moscow, Idaho 

What three words would you use to describe YVC? 
Helpful, Accommodating, Respectful 

What’s your favorite class? Why? How has it expanded your knowledge? 
So far, my favorite class has been Substance Use Disorder (SUD) 160, taught by Deniele Fleming. I find it interesting to learn about the history of substance use disorder and treatment. I struggled with addiction for most of adolescence and adult life. It feels really good to get started on a path to help others who have also struggled.  

Who is your mentor on campus? Why do you consider this person your mentor? 
Deniele Fleming always gives me really great advice. She can always point me in the right direction if there are other things I need on campus. She’s always been very supportive.  

What made you want to come to YVC? 
I had heard good things about the SUD program at YVC. The campus was also the most easily accessible to where I live.  

How did you decide on a major? 
My personal history with addiction and my passion for wanting to help other people who have struggled with addiction. With the time I have spent in treatment, I know how important it is to individuals here in the Yakima Valley and it made me want to give back. 
Are there any barriers that you’ve overcome to be successful at YVC? Please describe. 
Getting out of my comfort zone and focusing on what I need to get done.  
What do you like or find most interesting about your major? 
I just find it interesting how mental health and substance abuse go hand-in-hand and how much mental health issues impact substance abuse.  

What advice do you have for prospective students? 
Really weigh what you are passionate about and let it help give you an incentive to stay clean and [help shape] what to live for. It is also important to know what resources are out there.  

For me personally my family and my son are my biggest motivators. Along with newfound progress toward this career path.  

What’s your favorite spot-on campus? 
Deccio Higher Education Center 
How has Yakima Valley College changed you? 
YVC has given me the motivation to get kick started on what I’m passionate about and follow my dreams. Gives me motivation to keep pushing forward.  

How do you manage stress? 
Go on walks or spend quality time with my son or my mom. Or exercise.  

Do you have a job? How do you work that into your schedule? 
I just got hired at Comprehensive Mental Health as a care team member at an inpatient facility. They’ve been very good about working around school stuff and allowing me to have a flexible schedule.  

What do you view is your biggest achievement at YVC? 
So far, the biggest achievement for me is my grade point average. I’m doing very well and this is the first time in my life when I’ve cared this much about my GPA.  
Did you receive any financial aid or scholarship funding to attend YVC? If so, please describe how this helped you on your journey. 
Yes, I received the Pell Grant and have applied for a few more grants recently that I’m hoping to earn.  

What is your ultimate goal? Where would you like to end up? 
Ideally my 5-year plan is to graduate from YVC and find a job that I like and fit in and save up for a house for my family.

Interested in getting started at YVC? Visit our admissions page or request information.