DMS Student Spotlight

Alexander Rodriguez

Howdy, my name is Alexander Rodriguez. I am a junior Political Science major from San Antonio, TX. I am also the loudest and proudest member of the fighting Texas Aggie class of 2018!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part of being an Aggie is spending time on campus at various lectures or student organizations that further my knowledge outside of the typical classroom setting.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I became involved in the DMS because I believe that Texas A&M’s minorities need to build a community of inclusion amongst each other. The DMS houses some of the most important multicultural groups. I hope in the future we will work closely together as students and former students to assist each other in our future careers and maintain a DMS network past graduation.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

Since I’ve started my work in the DMS I have realized I enjoy working to develop students professional skills. I enjoy watching others be successful and develop as well-rounded students and leaders.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has given me a place where I feel as comfortable as I did back home. I enjoy talking about current events and pop culture with the students. I would say that without the DMS my college experience would be less eventful and I would feel more homesick.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan on going back to San Antonio to pursue a Masters degree in non-profit management.

Brenda Castillo

Howdy, my name is Brenda Castillo and I am a senior Molecular and Cell Biology major from San Antonio, Texas. But more importantly I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2017! A-Whoop!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part about being an Aggie is having many traditions, and the Aggie Core Values that enhance the student experience at Texas A&M. Traditions such as receiving the Aggie Ring, or attending Elephant Walk, provide the opportunity to see ourselves transitioning from freshmen to seniors,  and to appreciate what it is like to be a part of the Aggie Family.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I chose to become involved with the DMS during my first year at Texas A&M, after interacting with members of the Hispanic Presidents’ Council (HPC). Both HPC and the DMS were very welcoming, and they offered me a place where I could interact with diverse individuals, a place to grow as a leader, and a place where I was able to stay connected with my culture.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

While being involved in the DMS I have learned that it is important for me to remember what my motivation to pursuing my different professional goals is, and that motivation has to do a lot with my culture and my heritage. Keeping that motivation in mind is essential in order overcome difficulties or situations that divert me from achieving my goals.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has had a tremendous impact on my college experience. I have been a part of the DMS for four years now, and I have been able to take on different leadership roles within one of its’ organizations. The opportunities that the DMS provides allowed me to interact with individuals of different cultures and backgrounds in a deeper level, pursue my first collegiate experience abroad, learn how to work in a team setting, and to acquire a sense of professionalism.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to attend medical school and serve my community as a bilingual physician.

Sang Tran

Howdy! My name is Sang Tran and I am a junior Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIST) – Computation, Design, and Analysis major from Houston, Texas. But more importantly, I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2018. A-A-A-Whoop!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part about being an Aggie is to find that there are truly unlimited amount of resources provided by the university to assist me in finding what I am passionate about and how to achieve those dreams that I had set out for myself after I graduated from high school. Also, the opportunities to meet new people and learning about their cultures changed the way I viewed the world.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

When I first came to A&M, the only people I’d known at the time were my high school friends. I was concerned about how I was going to meet and befriend with people who are different from me since I was used to hanging with my group of friends all throughout high school. It wasn’t until when I received an email from the DMS inviting me to attend their “Welcome Social” as part of Gig ‘em Week. It was then that I joined IDEAAL, my very first collegiate organization, and met so many people who are similar to me as well as those who are different. The DMS is like my home away from home and it always will be the place that changed everything for me.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

From being a student leader in the DMS, I realized that I have the potential to make an impact in so many people’s lives. This is extremely important to me since growing up it was the very first lesson in which my father taught me; to put others before yourself as long as you know that you yourself are happy first.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has made me to become not only a better Aggie but a better person as a whole. I have learned so much for the past 3 years about how important it is to not only focus so much on academics but also to try and make some sort of impacts in the community as well.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan on moving to Redlands, California and start working for Esri as a GIS specialist. Not many people now that with a degree in GIST, you can almost work in any career fields that interest you so I am still trying to explore other career paths that are out there presented in front of me. I am also planning on working abroad if possible so I can expand my knowledge and meet more people who share the same interests as myself.

Khoi Quach

Howdy, my name is Khoi Quach and I am a sophomore Biomedical Science major from Houston, Texas. But more importantly, I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2019! AY-AY-AY-AY-AYYYYY!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

Being an Aggie had given me lots of opportunities to meet new and friendly people, being involved with the great traditions that Texas A&M has and being a part of the Aggie Network. It also showed me that selflessness is an important core value to have because when you help others, you also receive the happiness and joy that they receive.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I chose to become involved with DMS because I felt very welcoming and homely with all the organizations there. Coming in as a freshman, it was tough to find a place where you belong but i had found my second family at the DMS among all the organizations on campus.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

As I became more involved with DMS, I recognized that I can used the knowledge that others had taught me to help others newcomers like I was during my freshman year.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has influenced me a lot in these past 2 years of my collegiate experience since I found a second “home” and I also gained more knowledge about self-identity, and awareness about diversity issues.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to attend medical school to become a special-ed pediatrician because I love to help others especially kids. Before A&M, I planned to attend art school but one told me that “a painting can last in your memory for a day, a month or maybe a year; but a life that you save will always last in others’ hearts”.

Farren Fontenot

Howdy! My name is Farren Fontenot and I’m a sophomore Business major from Beaumont, TX, But more importantly, I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2019!  A-A-A-A-A!!!!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part about being an Aggie is getting to meet such a wide variety of people and hear their different stories.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I chose to be apart of DMS because I wanted to help ensure our campus climate is inclusive to everyone, a mission that I am deeply passionate about.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

I have learned a lot but there are many areas I need to grow in and I am thankful that I have leaders and peers that can help me do that.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has really helped shape my collegiate experience, from influencing my career choices to teaching me new and important lessons everyday.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to help influence and improve the education system. I believe investing in education is the most effective way to bring about positive change and feel certain I can.

Gentill Abdulla

gentill-abdullaHowdy! My name is Gentill Abdulla, and I am a Sophomore Physics major from Ethiopia, but raised in Houston, Texas! But more importantly, I am the Loudest and Proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2019!!!!! A-A-A-AAAA!!!!!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part about being an Aggie really is the capacity and opportunity we have to positively impact the campus around us. There are so many different ways of influencing others and unlike most other universities we have ample ability to act on that side of the student leadership spectrum.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I got involved in the DMS because it provided a promising and meaningful safe space for promoting and being involved in my own culture as well as those around me. The leadership experiences and skills I’ve been able to acquire and fine tune during my time at the DMS has also helped me unwind from all the stresses that bombard the life of a college physics major, and for that I am forever grateful.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

I learned that as far as event planning and executing goes, I am the kind of person who really believes in working as a collective. The saying goes “teamwork makes a dream work”, and my time collaborating and working with other student leaders has really put that to the test.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has provided me with a lot of opportunity to work with like minded peers for causes that I hold dear to my heart. Whether its advancement of minority groups or the joy of working together on a big community event, the DMS has housed a plethora of memories that I do not think I would’ve gotten had I not decided to be involved within it!

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan on pursuing an MBA and entering the finance field as a financial analyst with hopes of becoming a Chief Financial Officer for a major company or firm.

Jessica Hsu

jessica-hsuHowdy! My name is Jessica Hsu from Sugar Land, Texas! I am a sophomore Nutrition Major with a Business Minor, but most importantly, I am a loud and proud member of the Fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2019! A-A-A-A-A!!!!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

One of my favorite part of being an Aggie is the fire of the Aggie Spirit. From yelling football games to sharing memories at Silver Taps, we all become embodied with the passion of what an Aggie represents. Our Aggie Family is one that I am proud to be a part.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

Because I came from a diverse community, I never realized what it meant to have a self-identity. When I came to A&M, I did not know anyone and I began to realize how culturally different I was. . I was then introduced to the DMS through the Welcome Social where a past friend shared his story with me and how much the DMS personally influenced him. It was because of my shared vision of a strong, unified Asian Community that I joined APC as a Freshmen Intern. My passion drove my desire to built a safe community for Asians to be proud of who they are.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

Through the DMS, I learned the importance of initiation and my leadership abilities. Most importantly, I learned how influential a community can be. Through APC, I found a community that loved me because of who I am. They challenged me to explore who I am and guided me through my life. Because of them, I became a better leader, but most importantly, a better person. I learned more about my own leadership style and how to utilize them.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS provided me a safe space to talk about personal issues I experienced, culturally, socially, and academically. From listening to the little things to helping out with homework, I realized how much the DMS has been there for me as a family.

What are your plans after graduation?

Although I do not know what is in store for me in the future, I hope to engage in a profession where I am able to humbly support those in need.

Johnathan Strange

jonathan-strangeHowdy, my name is Johnathan Strange I am an Architecture –Urban and Regional Planning major from Dallas, Texas but most importantly I am The Loudest and The Proudest member of The Fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2018 A-A-A WHOOP!!!!!!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part about being an Aggie is being a part of the amazing Aggie Network. Networking is a great resource that will open doors and provide many opportunities for me in the future. Being an Aggie, is helping me become more diverse and is teaching me how to work and collaborate with others; along with helping me enhance my leadership skills.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I chose to become involved with the DMS, to help others give back to the Aggie community; I wanted to join an organization that will help me grow as a leader, a student, and also a man of color. I wanted to be a part of an organization that has the mindset or mission to make a difference on this campus and the B/CS community. The DMS provides many organizations in which I can give back as well as grow into an outstanding individual.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

While being involved with the DMS, I learned that I am passionate about helping others, I am developing into a good leader, I am good at communicating with others, and I am a great person to work with.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has influenced my collegiate experience, by giving me the opportunity to meet more minority students who have the same mindset and strive as me. I was fortunate enough to become a DMS Ambassador, which gives me the opportunity to make an impact on future Aggies, along with meeting and networking with former Aggies. The DMS has opened my eyes to see that there is more to this campus than being a student, it is helping me become an effective leader as well as helping me build my character.

What are your plans after graduation?

My plans after graduation, is to attend graduate school and earn my Masters of Architecture- Urban and Regional Planning so I can become a licensed Urban Planner. After graduate school, I plan to go back to Dallas and work on re-developing the urban area in low-income neighborhoods to give my community something to be proud of along with having a comfortable place to live.

Jose Fragoso

jose-fragosoHowdy! My name is Jose Fragoso  I am a Telecommunication Media Studies Major with a Minor in Film studies from Atlanta, Georgia but most importantly I am a loud and proud member of the Fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2018 A-A-A-Whoop!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part of being an Aggie is our traditions, from Silver Taps to Midnight Yell to putting a penny on Sully for good luck before exams (although I have yet to put a penny myself). I am a big football fan, so the fact that we are in the SEC is a bonus to why I love being an Aggie.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I chose to become involved in the DMS because my freshman year, as a out-of-state minority student I realized something that once I had arrived on campus: I had veered away from my Hispanic/Latino culture. Another thing that drove me to become involved with the DMS was missing the whole close-knit family aspect that I grew up with, I missed seeing people that looked like me and spoke the same language as me (that was not English). It was through the Mexican Student Association (one of our HPC umbrella organizations) that I learned about HPC and the DMS. Upon joining HPC I realized that I was not the only one who missed the whole “familia” aspect from back home. As an officer in HPC I make sure that hispanic/latinx students find their home in Aggieland because “We are the Aggies and the Aggies are we”!

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

Being part of the DMS, I have learned how much minority students are not aware of the resources that the department has to offer for them. And as a DMS student leader it is part of my job to make them aware of it.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has made my collegiate experience more welcoming, especially as an out-state student. I met more people who shared my goals and wishes to make Aggieland feel more like home to the incoming hispanic/latinx students.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I plan to join Uncommon Schools in Boston and teach for 2 years, all while getting my Masters in Urban Education. Upon finishing my second year, I will attend Yale or U.C Berkley and pursue a Masters in Screenwriting/Producing.

 

Brianna Lilly

brianna-lillyHowdy! My name is Brianna Lilly. I am a senior Chemistry major, Business Minor from Houston, Texas, but more importantly I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2017. A-WHOOP!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part about being an Aggie is being a part of the great Aggie Network. Connecting with current students and former students is what I love about being a part of this University. Networking plays a big role in success and I love that Texas A&M has such a strong alumnus that believes in helping other Aggies.

 

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I got involved in the DMS my freshman year. After visiting MSC Open House and learning about the organizations that were apart of the DMS I felt that I had to be apart of one of the organizations. The fact that these organizations were diversity based made me feel at home and gave me a sense of belonging that I’ve carried with me throughout my time here at Texas A&M.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

Being a part of the DMS has allowed me to recognize my abilities as a leader and develop skills that I did not possess before. I’ve become more conscious of my cultural identity because of the department.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS has given me the tools to better myself as a student leader. It has allowed me to make connections with other students and create lasting memories.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I plan work in the pharmaceutical industry and further my education by obtaining a Master’s Degree in my respective field.

 

Courtney Starnes

courtney-starnesMy name is Courtney Starnes. I’m a junior, Communication major from Dallas, TX, but most importantly I am the loudest and the proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie class of 2018!

What is your favorite part about being an Aggie?

My favorite part of being an Aggie is being a leader in the organizations I am in. Both of the organizations I am in I started off as a freshmen. I have watched them both grow, and a lot of it is because of my involvement. Being involved has allowed me to truly find out what I am passionate about.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? 

I chose to become involved in the DMS involuntarily. When I signed up for ExCEL I did not expect to be apart of a really big family. I remember at our conference my mentor’s told me about the resources in the DMS, and how good of a place it was to study. I started going in there to study but was always welcomed with warm smiles and “how is your day today?” on a daily basis. I guess that is what made me come back more. I felt included in some sort of family, and I loved it. This year, because I am on Executive Staff of ExCEL now, I have found myself in the DMS more than ever. I usually go every day to study before I leave campus. It’s turned into a ritual.

What have you learned about yourself while being involved with the DMS?

I’ve learned how influential I really can be while working in the DMS. I have helped students with their resume, degree plans, and even coming up with new organizations while sitting at the desks of the DMS. I’ve met incredible underclassmen who actually look at me as their mentor inside the DMS. I also learned how much of a family I really have surrounding me while in the DMS. It’s the highlight of my day to walk to MSC.

How has the DMS influenced your collegiate experience?

The DMS is a place I can go to relieve my mind, not only study. I heard from former students that POC never actually had their own space to go to. I believe the DMS is the space for that. People are always studying, taking naps, or even holding debatable conversation every time I come in. The DMS has also influenced me since I decided to apply for ExCEL my freshmen year. I have had the pleasure to meet with other DMS leaders and the staff here. The staff is so welcoming and encouraging, and makes me feel good about whatever task I choose to accomplish that day.

What are your plans after graduation?

This is the scariest question to me! As a Junior you would think I knew the answer for this but I really do not. I’ve never sat down and created a five year plan for myself, to organize my life out. I plan on doing that, because there is no way I can make an adequate decision without writing the step-to-step direction I plan on taking. I really have no idea though, but I’m not stressing. I think about things that have sparked my interest, like blogging. I have my own blog, and I wish to expand on it in my adult career as well. Although, I do not think that is all I want to do with my life. i have a few more years to plan it out, fortunately.

 

 

LMU EXCURSION PAINTING PROJECT   –   SPRING 2016LMU Centro

What it Means to Be a Latino Man by Latino Males United is an exhibition of sixteen acrylic paintings created by members who attended a three-day cultural excursion in San Antonio, Texas. This exhibit features the art work of men from variety of different Latino backgrounds and lived experiences. We implemented this painting project from inspiration from our last year’s visit to the Centro Cultural Aztlan, which is a community based organization with a mission to preserve, develop and promote Chicano/Latino art and culture.

As part of this painting project students were encouraged to reflect on their masculinity and Latino identity and were able to artistically and symbolically display how they see themselves. In this exhibition you will see a variety of inspiration, color and contrast.

 

juan emanuelOasis in the Latino Heart

 Jose Emanuel Quiros

A modern and symbolic representation of the struggles that adolescent Latino males face as they grow into men. The problems, which can be interpreted differently depending on the viewer, are represented by vibrant squares that are arranged in such a way as to mimic the appearance of a desert. Splattered paint across the desert represent specific struggles that the painter faced personally and subsequently imbued into the piece. The lone green square at the bottom right-hand corner of the piece represents the ability of a Latino male to successfully overcome adversity and personal strife on their path to become a successful and respectable Latino man.

 

joshua

Tex-Mex

Joshua Martin

Being a Hispanic already has its own identity of culture. Being a Hispanic in Texas has its own all-new blended culture. Tex-Mex culture is very unique from solely Texas and solely Mexican culture, from the food, art, music, and words. However every Mexican in Texas can find their roots in North American and South American tribes. In those times certain animals represented certain characteristics. In this painting is an Aztec bird that represents masculinity, courage, and strength.

 

 

juan escobar

 

The Path to Your Success

Juan Escobar

The painting describes the struggles us Latinos face, whether its racism, failure, or family challenges, the path shows that if you just continue following the path good things will happen. You have to fight for a desire, and many people face these particular things each and everyday, no matter what you should find a way to get what you want. The different colors that are around the path are distractions and sometimes those distractions can pull you towards them, yet you can find a way to get back on the path and accomplish great things.

 

 

juan reyes

UP in Thought

Juan M. Reyes Jr.

What constitutes a man in my eyes is being able to think for yourself as an individual while having a distinct connection with nature and the ambiance of the time. So within my work it had the theme of clouds which constitutethought, or thinking clouds. The pinkish cloud symbolizes day time and due to its large size it recognizes the deep impact day is within our lives as people. The purple cloud with stars around it of course symbolizes night time and the deep effect it has on our lives as we dream and sleep at night. The green hills or green clouds as I see it represent the fact that we as people must be up in thought as well as grounded to earth and staying humble to people and ourselves. The land is so important to pur existence both spiritually and physically. The pure white thinking clouds aknowledge the thinking bubble an indiviudal has, and it being white since our thoughts ought to be blank and fresh once having things proccess in our minds. We must be able to imagine at a blank slate type of mentality weary of judgment and corruption. ‘UP In Thought’ is truly a piece for the mind and has so much more to tell on it.

luis moreno

 

 

 

The Grounded Fundamentals

Luis Moreno

In pursuing a life of fulfillment and success as a Man, one must be able to grow on the basis of truth, joy and courage. It is essential that we grow roots on these fundamentals to continue developing into Men.

 

 

 

 

 

 

luis reyes

 

Nocturnal Dove

Luis Reyes

It doesn’t matter if you find yourself flying among a million problems and negative stereotypes, you have to find peace even in the worst situations.

 

 

 

 

Patrick

 

 

Natural

Patrick Patraca

It symbolizes that we as men have to be natural in our daily lives. This means accepting and embracing who you really are as a person. The painting was made with happiness in thought, and that is another big part of the whole painting. Without happiness, an individual cannot fulfill their complete potential.

 

 

 

hector puga

Burning Edge

Hector Puga

The sun represents my idea of masculinity because it represents a lot of what a man should strive to be. The sun like a man, looks over others and supplies warmth and guidance to them. A man needs to know how to work for others and think of others before himself. The layers of colors shown in my sun represent the different layers of a man. Men need to understand all of their layers in order to understand themselves. We constantly struggle to understand who we are but hope we can still shine bright enough to help all those we love.

 

frank

 

 

The Tree of Life

Frank Garcia

This tree represents the progression of my life. The roots symbolize a very strong identity of who I am, and where I’m from. Leaves represent growing as a person, hence why it’s incomplete of them. The tree has yet a lot to grow, as well as myself.

 

 

 

fernando r

 

Something Greater

Fernando Rosas

Being a Latino man means being the head of the family and always expected to protect them. He is to be the muscles and provider. A man looks over his family, as an eagle looks over the land he flies upon. But like an eagle that has the great skies to fly on, a Latino man has a great nation he can count on.

 

 

 

eduardo gandara

 

The Art of Landscaping

Eduardo Gandara

Each one of these brands you see represents brands of landscaping machines that I grew up with as my dad owned his landscaping business. Growing up undocumented was not easy for my family, but we managed to get by because of my dad’s business and because of our faith in Christ. I remember despising the summertime and school holidays because it meant that I had to go work with my dad and be out in the heat and work long hours. Today, however, it I realize that it was these experiences that have helped create my identity of what it means to be a Latino man and that is the value and power of hard work.

 

diego

 

Brave Heart

Diego Guerra

To be a man is to have heart with every aspect of your life. To be brave and not let anything stand in your way. To be as strong as steel. The sword and the heart are intertwined representing that strength and heart/compassion is essential to being a man.

 

 

 

 

cruz

 

 

Between Borders and Self-discovery

Cruz A. Ríos

The mix of colors symbolize the different parts of my identity. The colors move from cool to warm to signify the journey I am taking to be my authentic self. The black borders throughout are times in my life where I felt I couldn’t express myself. Being a Latino man means being confident in who I am, being a positive role model, and protecting the people I love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Bird and the Horizonalan martinez

Alan Martinez

Inspiration from this piece comes from the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, in terms of symbolism. In contrast to the novel’s theme of molding a strong black woman, I used it to describe my journey to becoming a strong Latino Male. The Horizon is a powerful symbol representing dreams and aspirations far from reach, while also outlining importance of transition, whether it’s  the transition from day to night or  from child to man. I also incorporated my own elements to the piece by adding foliage and flora to signify masculinity as being natural and true to oneself, and a quetzal, a bird prominent in the history of Mexico and Central America, as a sacred emblem and reminder from the once great empires that dominated the lands.

 

alan

 

 

Man of Big Heart

Alan Flores

This painting describes a man who shows his masculinity through caring actions. He does this by putting those he loves first and always carries them in his heart. A man is measured through his emotions.

 

 

 

IMG_3059

 

The Path to Your Success

Juan Escobar

The painting describes the struggles us Latinos face, whether its racism, failure, or family challenges, the path shows that if you just continue following the path good things will happen. You have to fight for a desire, and many people face these particular things each and everyday, no matter what you should find a way to get what you want. The different colors that are around the path are distractions and sometimes those distractions can pull you towards them, yet you can find a way to get back on the path and accomplish great things.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phuong NguyenIMG_3992

Howdy! My name is Phuong Nguyen and I am a sophomore Civil Engineering major from Baytown Texas, but more importantly, I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2018. A-A-A-A-A!

What has your education done for you?

My education has helped me build the confidence to learn and believe in myself. It has given me the strength to pursue my goals in life, the opportunity to gain a life time of knowledge, and to meet my life-long friends. It has allowed me to understand my capabilities and sharpened them to help me be the person I am today.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I felt lost in an unfamiliar environment when I first came to A&M, and I thought that it would be easier for me to get closer to the people with similar background. Then it all started when I joined IDEAAL in my freshman year. I am proud to be an Asian American, therefore I wanted to learn more about the Asian American culture and identity in a diverse community while sharing my experiences with others. Joining IDEAAL has helped me become a better leader and a better person as I am today. I have met my best friends through IDEAAL and created the best memories of my college experiences, which know will be unforgettable memories and they will be my friends for life. I am grateful to be a member of IDEAAL and a part DMS.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to attend graduate school for a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering. I want to travel and explore the new places and discover new opportunities.

What is your best tip for success?

“Sometimes the door closes for us so we might turn and see an open gate to a wider field of opportunity.” Branson Burchard

Work hard, believe in yourself, and never give up. There is always another opportunity waiting ahead and we need to keep trying.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Unforgettable, challenging, and treasured.

 

Brittanei Cain

Brittanei
Howdy, My name is Brittanei Cain and I am junior Agricultural Communications and Journalism major from Mesquite, Texas. But more importantly, I am the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2017. A-A-A-Whoop!

What has your education done for you?

My education has opened more doors than I could ever imagine. Education gives me the opportunity to express myself and learn new aspects of various subjects. I’ve had the opportunity to have amazing mentors and professors to help me along the way and I am forever grateful. I’ve gotten the opportunity to research STEM education and retention for minority students and it’s motivated me more than ever. Education challenges me everyday but I enjoy the fact that I am constantly learning. Education is the key to success

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I choose to be involved with the DMS as soon as I exited the EXCEL conference my freshman year. I had great mentors and team leaders who inspired me to give back to the black community. As a participant and coordinator for AASLI, I was given the opportunity to learn about myself through the tenants of the program. I helped coordinate a cultural excursion that helped sophomores explore the tenants of AASLI as well as have meaningful conversations and dialogue. My aggie experience wouldn’t have been the same without my student organizations. I have been able to connect and network with some of the brightest minds at Texas A&M. The DMS provides active space for students to learn and grow. If it were not for many of the advisors and students in the DMS, I would have not been as successful at A&M.

What are your plans after graduation?

I plan to move to Southern California and explore my opportunities in the Marketing Tech industry. I will work in a start-up environment and work on business development, content marketing and candidate success.

What is your best tip for success?

Stay focused and do not let anyone steer you away from your dreams.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Dynamic, Challenging, and Transformative

Zykkia Webb
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Howdy! My name is Zykkia Webb and I’m a Sophomore International Studies Major with a Minor in Arabic Studies from Houston, TX. But more importantly, I’m the loudest and proudest member of the fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2018.

What has your education done for you?

I didn’t grow up in the best environment however, my education has always been a beacon of serenity and hope. My education has given me the means to thrive and succeed in life in ways I never knew possible.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I chose to be involved in the DMS so that I would be able to see people who look like me, think like me and wanted similar things out of life. The DMS and my student organization has had a huge role in my Aggie experience. I am a much more outgoing, outspoken and much better leader because of the things that I experienced in the DMS and my student organization.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I plan to either go to law school or do a master’s program in hopes to become an Ambassador for Middle Eastern countries.

What is your best tip for success?

Never compare yourself to anyone. The moment you began to compare yourself you’ll lose sight of who you are and why you’re doing what you’re doing which would ultimately lead to the demise of your success.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Amazing, Bitter Sweet, and Unforgettable

Zipporah Jackson

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Howdy! My name is Zipporah Jackson and I’m a Junior English Rhetoric Major from Houston, TX. But more importantly, I’m the loudest and proudest member of the fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2017.

What has your education done for you?

My education has done a lot for me. Since I have been here, I have been exposed to so many different subjects and I gained tons of knowledge I did not have before college. Also my education has allowed me to land a media branding internship that I’m so excited to start.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I chose to become involved in the Department of Multicultural Services (DMS) my freshman year. When I first came to Texas A&M University, I didn’t feel at home because I didn’t see people I could relate to. However, after ExCEL, (Excellence uniting Culture, Education, and Leadership) I saw many friendly faces that made me feel welcomed. I immediately became involved in the DMS in BSAC (Black Student Alliance Council), ExCEL, MEDALS, (Maximizing Educational Development through Academic and Leadership Skills), and SBSLC (Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference).

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to return to Houston an obtaining a Master’s in Education from the University of Houston. I also plan to teach at my home district of Aldine as an English teacher. Lastly, I plan to work on my media branding business as well.

What is your best tip for success?

My best tips for success is to stay focused, have a planner, write a to do list and make time for yourself. Also exercise and get some sleep!

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Unique, rewarding, and humbling

Luis Moreno

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Howdy! My name is Luis Moreno and I am a Sophomore Industrial Engineering major from Pasadena, Texas but most importantly, I am the LOUDEST and the PROUDEST member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2018; A-A-A-A-A!

What has your education done for you?

My education has essentially giving me an opportunity to continue learning and a deeper insight into what it means to expand my understanding. Attending Texas A&M has been more than a place where I just go to class; it has been an experience that has taught me to stay organized, live responsibly, and enjoy life more.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

Before attending Texas A&M, one of my priorities was to get involved with organizations that are making a difference on campus. In joining HPC (Hispanic Presidents’ Council) and LMU (Latino Males United), I have been given an opportunity to work on projects that benefit the Hispanic community. Both of these organizations have challenged me and helped into becoming a better leader.

What are your plans after graduation?

With graduate school a possibility, heading to the work force seems a more plausible route. With a few more years left before graduation, applying the knowledge I have learned while at school would help me earn experience right away. In the future, if given the opportunity, going back to school for a second degree would be ideal.

What is your best tip for success?

Success varies for each person but a personal mindset I keep is to always look at your progress rather than the destination. In a fast-paced world, patience is misunderstood and undervalued. With time, we will reach our goal.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Meaningful, rich, and thought-provoking

Jee Hyun (Gloria) Yoo
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Howdy! My name is Jee Hyun (Gloria) Yoo. I am a sophomore Civil Engineering major from Dallas, Texas. But more importantly I am a loud and proud member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2018! AY-AY-AY-AY-AYYYY!!

What has your education done for you?

My education has given me the strength and confidence to accomplish my goals through facing and overcoming various difficulties. It has allowed me to build significant relationships that has helped me develop personally as well as professionally.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I began my college career unsure of how I would manage this new lifestyle away from home. I was looking for guidance to help me jump start my college career when I learned about the Institute for the Development and Education of Asian American Leaders (IDEAAL). I saw leadership as an important aspect in developing a career because it would help gain confidence to promote my own success as well as that of others. I joined IDEAAL in the fall of 2014, my freshman year at Texas A&M University, to embrace my Asian-American culture as well as to surround myself with people to help me adjust to college life. By becoming part of the Department of Multicultural Services (DMS) through IDEAAL, I have met great mentors and other leaders from whom I’ve learned good advice to continually improve myself. I also had my first experiences with Aggie traditions, such as pond hopping and learning the wildcats, while connecting with peers with whom I have shared experiences and made memories. Such significant relationships that I have built helped me see the loyalty, kindness, and respect among all Aggies.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I plan to pursue a Master’s degree in civil engineering, hopefully somewhere with new surroundings to explore and develop my ideas for my career. I also hope to be interning at a company in order to gain experience and get officially licensed as a civil engineer. My ultimate goal is to travel to less-developed countries in order to help them build the proper foundations and structures to progress alongside other advancing societies.

What is your best tip for success?

“the most wasted of all days is one without laughter.” – e. e. cummings

You need the motivation, determination, and energy to reach your goals. Without happiness none of those are possible, or quite as efficient enough, to achieve those goals. So my best tip for success is to follow your instincts and do what makes you happy, whether it be a difficult, tedious path or a simple, carefree path. But be sure to be prepared for wherever that path may lead you.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Overall, my Aggie experience has been welcoming, engaging, and inspiring.

Thanks and Gig Em’!

Victoria Glass

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Howdy my name is Victoria Glass I am a junior allied health major from Houston Texas but most importantly I am the loudest and the proudest fighting Texas Aggie class of 2017 A-A-A Whoop.

What has your education done for you?

My education has helped shaped me into the person I am today and has provided so many opportunities for me. I have been able to learn so much not only from books but from the overall college experience and environment.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I chose to become a part of the Department of Multicultural Services (DMS) because I wanted to make a difference. As a student leader of Aggies to Aggies (A2A) I can help make a difference on the A&M campus through education on diversity. Through this role I have become even more passionate about the importance of cultural awareness and have been able to fill a leadership position and be more than I thought I could be.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I will be going to nursing school and then start my career.

What is your best tip for success?

My best tip for success is to not be afraid to go for what you want, but be prepared to put in work to get it. Don’t expect anything to just be given to you.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

I would describe my Aggie experience as a major blessing. I feel blessed to have made it to college yet alone A&M because it could have been so easy for me to not have made it here. I am so thankful that I am here and have been able to be a part of everything that I am.

Selena Mares

Mares

Howdy, my name is Selena Mares and I am Senior Human Resources Development major with a double minor in Communication and Business from Dallas, TX, but most importantly I’m the loudest and proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2016; A-WHOOP!

What has your education done for you?

My education has allowed me to be a true believer in that anything that I set my mind to do can and will be accomplished if I give it my all and never give up. It has allowed me to learn so many beneficial things that have helped me be the person I am today. It has granted me the ability and right to be aware of my surroundings and not be afraid to take on so many opportunities that an education allows me to have.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I decided to join the DMS family because I felt a true connection with what it represented and with the staff advisors. The DMS was a place where I found my true self. I was given support at all times and was able to take upon leadership roles. The role that the DMS and my student organizations have had in my Aggie experience is that they had allow me to step out of my comfort zone and not be afraid to take upon challenges and opportunities that I encounter.

What are your plans after graduation?

My plan after graduation is attend graduate school and obtain my Masters in Human Resources Development.

What is your best tip for success?

The best tip for success is to always seek help when needed and do not be afraid of change. The first years of college can be a bit overwhelming and challenging at some times, but there should not be any excuses to seek help or give up. At times we may encounter obstacles but we should always remain positive and not let the bad things take over.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

My Aggie experience has been challenging, stunning, and life-changing!

Chris Chen
Chris

Howdy! My name is Chris Chen. I am a sophomore Animal Science major with minors in Biomedical Sciences and Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences from Houston, Texas, but most importantly I’m the loudest and proudest member of the Fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2018, A-A-A-A-A!

What has your education done for you?

My education has helped me perceive our world in a different way, while allowing me to discover my true passions.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

My DMS journey began in my freshman year, when I joined IDEAAL for the first time. From the experience, I had received myriad guidance from numerous mentors and peers who took their time to aid me in building my leadership, integrity, scholarship, and cultural pride. Thanks to them, I am now a mentor for my IDEAAL mentees. I hope I’ll be able to inspire them the same amount as my mentors and peers. I would not have gotten so far without the addition of DMS to my collegiate career.

What are your plans after graduation?

I feel that my true passion lies in serving people and animals of our society, and to somehow make an impact on our world. Therefore, I choose to take the path of a pre-veterinary student, in which I can experience my true passion blossom.

What is your best tip for success?

According to a judicious paragon I have once known, “One should travel the world by foot, and make a difference in the world by hand”. From her wise words, success can be found by taking initiatives to make a difference. In other words, I believe that success cannot be established without the input of hard work. Therefore, one should not be afraid to work hard if they yearn to succeed.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

My Aggie experience has been adventurous, joyful, and transformative.

Kishan B. Patel

kishan

Howdy, y’all! My name is Kishan B. Patel. I am from Sugar Land, TX and I am double majoring in Biomedical Science and Entomology, but more importantly I am the loudest and proudest member of the Texas A&M Class of 2018. AY! AY! AY! AY! AY!!!!!!!!

What has your education done for you?

Education has served as a compass for me. It has led me to different experiences, and opportunities that have made me who I am today.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

Coming in as a freshmen, I never understood what culture shock was. Transitioning from one of the most diverse places in Texas, to the demographics of A&M helped me define that phrase. Growing up, I learned to really love and appreciate my heritage and community. Coming to A&M however, I felt a disconnection between the South Asian communities on campus. I was never able to find that community that I was able to celebrate my culture with and that is why I joined the DMS. The DMS has helped serve as an avenue of connection between different cultures and even rebuild existing ones. The DMS has helped me locate and guide my passion for my community, as well as help me grow into an ambassador for the Asian community.

What are your plans after graduation?

My plan after graduation is to go to Medical School and give back to the community. I want to be able to impact the community through my profession and help people live a great life.

What is your best tip for success?

“If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles” -Sun Tzu

The best tip for success is to have passion. Passion is the one thing that will be able to fuel ones journey, to becoming successful. Also it is the only thing that will distinguish a person and take them to the next level.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Self-defining, Unbelievable, Fulfilling

 

An Tran

an

Howdy! My name is An Tran and I am a Junior Chemistry major from The Woodlands, Texas, but most importantly I am a loud and proud member of the Fighting Texas Aggie Class of 2017, A-A-A-WHOOP!!!

What has your education done for you?

My education allows me to evaluate my own intelligence, work ethic, and ability to contribute as a citizen. It is a metric for what I have achieved, can achieve, and will achieve.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I decided to join the DMS family because of what it represents. I want to be part of a smaller community with a bigger goal. I would not want to be in a club with hundreds of members were I barely get to know everyone and I can’t make meaningful connections. That is what initially drew me to the DMS, and as I get more involved, I am able to connect with the values held by the department in a deeper level. I want to continue with my involvement and build on it and that is why I am here today as one of the student leaders. My organization has shaped my Aggie experience significantly. It is my home away home and the people here always make me smile.

What are your plans after graduation?

My plan is to enroll in medical school and one day become a successful surgeon.

What is your best tip for success?

“If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles” -Sun Tzu

During this time we are able to learn about the different ways we deal with various academic, interpersonal, and intrapersonal obstacles. Knowledge is power and that includes how well you know yourself.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Eye-opening. Thrilling. Challenging.

Johneisha Motley

johneisha
Howdy, my name is Johneisha Motley and I am Senior Biomedical Science major with a double minor in Communication and Education from DeSoto, TX, but most importantly I’m the proudest member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Class of 2016; A-WHOOP!

What has your education done for you?

Personally, obtaining a higher education means freedom from every “no”, “can’t” and denial in life. It is an avenue to prove to those determined to destroy you that you can do whatever you have set out to achieve and more. It has granted me the ability to transform my doubters into believers and my haters into my biggest fans.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

I decided to become involved in the DMS because as a freshman, I was inspired by individuals that participated in the DMS to become all that I have set out to be. By attending a predominantly white university, minorities are easily discouraged by the lack of awareness of minority success. Nevertheless, by participating in student organizations within the DMS, such as Aggies-2-Aggies and Uniting Divine Sisters retreat, it helped create an atmosphere of encouragement in efforts to inspire students to not give up when faced with trials and tribulations. It advised students to never settle for less and reach beyond your wildest dreams in order to accomplish goals that you once thought were incapable of pursuing. Furthermore, as an advocate for change, I wanted to use the adrenaline of seeing minorities cross the stage with a degree at Texas A&M University as motivation to succeed against all odds and hopefully become the hero that I wish I had growing up.

What are your plans after graduation?

My plans after graduation is to attend veterinarian school and receive my certification to practice veterinary medicine in the State of Texas.

What is your best tip for success?

The best tip for success is to not be afraid of failure. Failure is just self-recognition that it is not always about how many times you fall, but instead it is about how many times can you fall and get back up fighting. Sometimes losing a few battles is the key to winning a war.

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

Beyond Every No!

Luxjoria Thibodeaux

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Howdy! My name is Luxjoria Thibodeaux. I am a Junior, Interdisciplinary Studies Major with a Minor in Spanish from Houston, Texas. Most importantly, I am the LOUDEST and the PROUDEST member of the fighting Texas Aggie class of 2017! Aye Aye Ayeeeee, Whoop!!!

What has your education done for you?

Thus far, my education at Texas A&M University has been remarkable! Initially, I was in love with the Aggie traditions and inviting environment, but those qualities do not compare to the grand impact that this university has had on my sense of self, confidence, and work ethic. As a Regent’s Scholar, the first person in my family to attend college, I have been honored to tear down family barriers and to surpass my dreams. It is empowering, yet humbling to inspire and demonstrate to my younger brother and cousins, that where you come from does not define your ability to succeed; instead, you can do anything that you put your mind to! I have come to the realization that your mind can be the ignition that propels you forward or the enemy that paralyzes you.

Why did you choose to become involved in the DMS? What role has the DMS and your student organization(s) played in your Aggie experience?

Texas A&M University was truly a culture shock for me as I graduated from a minority based high school of approximately 2,000 students. As an African American Student at a predominately white institution, there is always a sense of having to prove myself and my intellect. While I knew it was imperative that I learn to interact with people from all walks of life, and be comfortable and confident doing so, it was also important that I remain well rooted in the Black community and surround myself with people who identify with my culture. Becoming involved in the DMS has been an eye-opening and amazing experience as a Coordinator of Marketing for the African American Student Leadership Institute (AASLI), an Accelerated Staff member for the Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference (SBSLC), and a member of other DMS organizations. The DMS has impacted my life tremendously! I now realize that though things may not directly affect me as an individual, it is important to be competent in Black history and situations that continue to affect the Black community as a whole today. It is no longer enough to just be competent, but to inform others, to stand up for what you believe in, to get involved in the community, to thrive intellectually/confidently, and to define your own destiny and ability.

What are your plans after graduation?

It is my aspiration to enroll in a 5 year Master’s degree program in order to graduate with both my Bachelor’s degree in Math and Science Education, with a Minor in Spanish, and my Master’s degree in Curriculum Planning. Succeeding graduation, I WILL become a phenomenal elementary school teacher, author, and illustrator. I am determined to transform the face of education, while helping all of my students achieve academic, social, and emotional growth! It is also my dream to earn a Doctorate’s degree, to build a business complex composed of various facets, and to maximize my organization, “The Butterfly Effect.”

What is your best tip for success?

My greatest tip for success requires one to comprise all 9 of the following suggestions into his/her life:

Always put GOD first! 2. Dream big 3. Develop a plan to conquer your aspirations 4.Never procrastinate 5. Mediocrity is not an option 6. Believe in yourself 7. Ignore nay-sayers 8. Remain determined 9. Achieve the unthinkable!

Describe your Aggie experience in three words.

In a summation of three words, my Aggie experience has been transformative, eye-opening, and empowering!