College is one of the most important parts of anyone’s life. College is where people’s career choices are made. As Latinos we want the best for our families and people work hard to get the diploma that is a ticket to a better life. Many Latino college students struggle with academics and feeling accepted and supported. Even though many are being supported by faculty, student organizations and family there are still struggles. Faculty who are willing to help are people who care and believe in Latinos becoming more than a minority. Every Latino student is different but all have the same goal; to prove to others that they can have a better life. Parents want the best for their children and they work hard to have a better education and job, more opportunities, and a broad view of the world. Many students struggle during their college years and sometimes think what’s the point of going to school is if they are not going to be accepted or maybe that all the work they put in their classes will not pay off.
College is where people decide on their career paths. Valuable lifetime friendships are made. Friends are going to help you through any struggle you have. That’s why there are student organization, clubs, and counseling to help students. Latinos stick together and help each other out especially in education with tutoring or advice. Sometimes the biggest struggle for Latino students is fitting in and getting into the groove of school especially if they haven’t been in school for a while.
Samuel Aladema is a retired U.S Marine veteran and a graduating Latino student at Indiana University South Bend. He has endured many things and has worked to achieve his childhood dreams. He was a full time student, job holder and parent. He decided to go back to school in 2007 to get a degree in business. His dream has been to have a restaurant. Getting accustomed to school was a struggle because he was older then the students and sometimes the professors.
With help from his veteran friends he revived the Student Veteran Organization and became president. He is a perfect example that no matter what your age or what you have accomplished, you can strive for more. If you put your heart and mind into it, you can truly accomplish anything. Samuel could of given up after he got laid off, but he didn’t. In order for him to get a better job he needed a degree and he went for it. Now he is getting a degree in business; who knows what good things are in store for him. 6
Some students struggle with getting acclimated, others struggle with finances and with language. Some Latino students have English as their second language. They have to try even harder. Kharen Seminario Lowe, a student of Indiana University South Bend, is graduating with a Master’s degree in public affairs with a concentration in government affairs. One of her struggles was balancing full times studies and full time work. English is her second language so when she had to work harder to write papers and make presentations. She will continue her education next fall at IU Bloomington.
These two IUSB students have gone through many barriers to get what they want and accomplish their dreams. Their message for other IUSB Latino students is to work hard on their studies, to focus on their goal, and no matter how hard it gets you can get through it. Just put your heart into it and you can truly accomplish anything. Si se puede.
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