31
July
2018
|
05:00 PM
America/Chicago

Anali Alanis believes South Texas College changed the trajectory of her life.

Former student and alumna Anali Alanis looks back fondly on her experiences at South Texas College.

Anali Alanis believes South Texas College changed the trajectory of her life.

Born in China, Nuevo Leon in Mexico, Alanis said she came to the United States as a 12year- old. Entering middle school, she said she was bullied and often cried when she got home because she couldn’t speak English. Growing up, she said she often slept on the floor, and her family home lacked many basic amenities including air conditioning, heat in the winter, or hot water.

“My mom would always say that we were here because they wanted a better future for us, but at age 12 it made no sense to me,” she said.

Anali said she looks back on her parents’ own education. Her father and mother were compelled to drop out of school in the sixth grade in order to work on ranches, which prompted her to go to work right after high school to help the family.

“My parents were very proud of me when I graduated from high school to them that was a great accomplishment,” she said. “In the fall of 2004 after high school, I enrolled here at South Texas College and began one of the longest but not necessarily impossible journeys of my life. College was no joke. I was able to work and keep up with school until the spring of 2007 when life happened.”

At age 20, Anali became a single mother, and her priorities shifted from her education to raising her new daughter. She applied for her first job with the City of Pharr and became a payroll clerk.

HR Director-City of Pharr and former student Anali Alanis
“I know the timeline seems long, but as I mentioned before, life happens. Being a student at South Texas College molded me into the person I am today. I learned that discipline is crucial for success. I learned that if you want to stand from the crowd you must work hard for it.”
HR Director-City of Pharr and former student Anali Alanis

“I worked very hard to show my abilities, skills, and knowledge, but despite how hard I worked many opportunities for advancement came up, and I was always overlooked,” she said. “One day someone at work told me ‘what a waste of talent, you will never be able to advance despite your hard work and dedication because you have no education.’”

While she was very offended and irritated by the remark, at the end of the day, Anali said she went home and realized that as much as she disliked the comment, she knew it was true.

“I asked my mother if she was willing to support me on this journey, I wanted to be better, and I wanted to go back to school and get an education for two reasons,” she said. “I wanted to set a good example for my daughter, and I wanted to give her a good quality of life.”

In the fall of 2009, she came back to South Texas College and realized she was close to obtaining an associate degree in Business Administration. She took advantage of night classes, weekend, and online classes, which enabled her to receive her degree one year later in fall 2010.

“I remember studying in the portable buildings here on campus. That is where I started. This was my place. This is where I would drive from home, and I loved it,” Anali said.

She then received her Bachelor’s in Applied Technology (BAT) from STC in 2015, and finally her Master in Public Affairs from the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley.

After obtaining her degree, Anali said she was able to move up in her career. She received a promotion at work and became the first female human resources director for the City of Pharr.

She also serves as the Civil Service Director for Pharr and the president of the Human Resources Consortium in the Valley comprised of all human resources directors in neighboring cities.

“I know the timeline seems long, but as I mentioned before, life happens. Being a student at South Texas College molded me into the person I am today. I learned that discipline is crucial for success. I learned that if you want to stand from the crowd, you must work hard for it.”