A vision for a better life
Student of the Week: Omar Villanueva
"I learned that the only way out of this life was through education. I learned very quickly that getting good grades in school led to more favorable conditions and opportunities in life, so I began dedicating myself to my education as much as possible.”
Growing up in an impoverished family, Omar Villanueva said he learned at a very young age that the only way out of that life was through education.
Born and raised in Monte Alto, and among 9 siblings, Villanueva said his father and mother only had elementary school educations, but it made him work hard to succeed in school.
Years later and full of life experiences, Villanueva says he is pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Computer and Information Technologies at South Texas College.
“Even though I had many siblings, it still did not make life any easier to deal with being poor, so at a very young age, I learned that the only way out of this life was through education,” Villanueva said. “I learned very quickly that getting good grades in school led to more favorable conditions and opportunities in life, so I began dedicating myself to my education as much as possible.”
Graduating 89 out of 267 from Edcouch-Elsa High School, Villanueva then received an associate degree in Computer Maintenance Technology and held jobs as a computer instructor, administrative assistant, and head of a computer department within local ISDs.
It was later in life that Villanueva realized that having an associate degree was not enough for him to continue his career goals. This is when he decided to become a student at South Texas College, he said.
“STC was the ideal place for me to revive my education because it was a local college with attainable goals,” Villanueva said. “My experience at the college was not always easy, especially when you were the oldest student in the class, but with hard work and perseverance, I quickly learned that I could get good grades in school again.”
The Bachelor of Applied Technology Degree (BAT) in Computer and Information Technologies (CIT) is meant to prepare students with relevant, technical knowledge of CIT practices, in order to provide solutions for real-world problems and technical support for computer-based information systems.
Technology-oriented coursework forms the core requirement for the program, with an emphasis on the application of modern technology.
“My unique approach to college was to always remember where I came from and where I wanted to go,” Villanueva said. “I had to have a vision, and that vision was to try and live a better life. With that in mind, it served as huge motivator to push me forward and succeed in all my courses.
“A truly dedicated student will do whatever it takes to survive and make it in this world,” Villanueva said. My message to my peers about success in STC would be to never quit, even when you feel like quitting. Take the path less taken. There are no shortcuts to true success. It can be hard, but in the end, it is you that will reap all the rewards of the personal sacrifices made while attending college. That is something that no one can ever take away from you.”