I’m Hispanic and I’m the first in my family to graduate college and graduate school.
Growing up I never visioned myself accomplishing much as a student. My focus was always on starting a career, little did I know that education was the path that I was supposed to take to advance my career.
I wish I could say that attaining a college degree was easy but it wasn’t. In fact it took close to seven years for me to complete my bachelors simply because I was working full-time to pay for tuition. When you’re the first in your family to try something new it’s a lot harder because the path you are on is so new that your immediate family doesn’t know how to support you. Good thing my family gave me the emotional encouragement I needed in order to finish.
I have made a way for future generations who come after me to not only say here is the road but also to say that there is a destination and a degree will be your reward for finishing.
When I completed grad school I knew my life was going to change. The further I went in school the sharper my mind became and every day when I wake up I think through an educated mind.
The choices I make reflect the education I received.
I have received the tools to build a different life for my family. Being the first to graduate college has caused me to think about other victories that I can accomplish in life. I put an end to the myth that college wasn’t for me. I also broke through the stronghold that a degree is just a paper on the wall. I now know that a degree is a life accomplishment and a stepping stone for where my career can go.
The decision to finish college has changed my family tree forever. My future children will reap the benefits of what I was able to sow in my life. I’m happy that future generations can benefit from the decisions that I was able to make out of high school. I hope to share my message with other young Hispanic middle school and high school students. As I speak to Hispanics about education, I always tell them that it only takes one person to change a family tree. Are you that one person?