03:04 PM

Student of the Week: Esmeralda Mendez

Inspired by her mother, who returned to college later in life to pursue a better life for her family, Esmeralda Mendez says she was introduced to hard work at an early age.

Recalling the late nights when she would often fall asleep on the kitchen table studying with her mother, that experience gave her the insight into the mindset needed to eventually finish college, she said.

Esmeralda is a Dual Enrollment Medical Science Academy (DEMSA) student pursuing an associate degree in Biology, and will be receiving her degree this coming May before graduating high school.

After high school, Esmeralda says she intends on obtaining a bachelor, masters and doctorate degrees. Eventually she plans on entering the FBI and starting a career in forensic science.

“Not only was I inspired by all those great shows like CSI, I was highly influenced by my mother who went back to school after having four kids,” Esmeralda said. “Even though she had a full-time job, she decided to go back to school to become a business analyst. She gave me a lot of insight into the real world and college.”

As an active member of her church youth group, Esmeralda says she has earned many hours of volunteer work serving as a patient ambassador at a hospital. As part of the Medical Reserve Corps, Esmeralda says she also volunteers with a local fire department.

“For students, I would tell them that I know it’s hard. There will be a lot of sacrifices that will need to be made, but it’s all worth it in the end,” she said. “Keep your mind set on the end goal because it’s all worth it.”

Top three accomplishments:

“One of my greatest accomplishments would be joining DEMSA and graduating in May.”

“Being here at South Texas College has been a great accomplishment for me.”

“I am also proud to be graduating high school with honors. That’s a really big deal for me.”