The University of New Mexico Class of 2019 showcases the diligence, perseverance and grit it takes to overcome life's obstacles and succeed.
At UNM, each of us defines all of us. We believe what makes us different, makes us strong. Each of the graduates in the Class of 2019 embody that message. Their stories are as different as the degrees they're walking across the stage to receive. From tough medical diagnoses to childhood trauma, these Lobos let nothing stand in the way of pursuing their dreams.
For some, this is just a stepping stone in further academic studies. For others, this is the start of a new journey as they pursue careers in their chosen fields. For all of them, commencement is a moment to celebrate their achievement up to this point; and revel in the knowledge that they are now Lobos for Life.
Holly Olivarez took an untraditional road to graduation, and now is headed to Colorado for a fully-funded Ph.D. program.
Getting through college is tough enough for any student. For graduating senior Abdullah Shah, having a hearing loss and wearing hearing aids added an extra challenge to his years at The University of New Mexico but haven’t held him back. Click here to read about how Abdullah overcame a disability to graduate in three years.
Paul didn't let a tough diagnosis keep him out of the classroom for long. He's graduating from the UNM OILS Program in a couple weeks, and his story is one of triumph and overcoming the odds.
Jared Mang knows the dedication it takes to be successful on the field and in the classroom—and he knows how to have a little fun, too. The Lobo outfielder is getting a degree in Liberal Arts and has big plans for his future.
Growing up, Lilian Casias was always encouraged to the break norm, and her parents wanted to give her every opportunity to be able to do so. Because of this in 1996, her parents packed up their lives and moved their family from Mexico to the United States to give their children a better life and better opportunities.
Tye Martin, a grad student who suffers from muscular dystrophy, is getting his doctorate in Biomedical Engineering this month. He's been inspired by the disease to work towards a cure and create adaptive biomedical devices to help others with the same condition.
Jared Thurgood is from The University of New Mexico with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nuclear Engineering. But there were times along the way when he didn’t know if he was going to succeed. Read about how the Presidential Scholar made the best of opportunities.
Emily Wilks made her way from New York to New Mexico not knowing what to expect living life as a Lobo. This Honors College student counts being in a sorority and student government as part of her undeniably wonderful experience at UNM. Her journey as a Communications major starts with curiosity and continues with courage.
Taylor Bui has been studying at UNM Law for the past 20 years, but is now geared up to use his education to give back to the community. His plans are to use his juris doctorate to make New Mexico a better place.