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Texas State Students


Tx St Rising Star

September 2016 Update:

The USDA FATE grant has graduated 35 students as of August 2016.  We have 6 more scheduled to graduate in December 2016 and 4 will graduate by the end of 2017.  Of the undergraduate students who graduated, 7 are going to Graduate School. 

One of our graduate students is enrolled in a Ph.D. program.


Aguilera image
GRADUATED December 2014
 
Mariela Aguilera        Marielaa2010@yahoo.com                                                      
MAJOR:  Nutrition
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
My hobbies are dancing, rec sports, baking and gardening.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I plan to complete a BS in nutrition and complete the requirements to become a registered dietitian. I want to work in a hospital or a place for learning perhaps in a government setting. I will work on a master’s degree, and even further my education, all while obtaining good grades and pushing forward.

barco
 
 
Margarita Barco      m_b189@txstate.edu
 
MAJOR:  Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:   Lasara, Texas
 
ABOUT ME:
My hobbies are reading books, drawing, riding horses, and fishing. I love to play soccer and softball. I love to spend quality time with my friends, family and my dogs. I enjoy traveling and seeing different parts of the country.
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS:
I hope to one day attend Texas A&M University for vet school where I’d like to graduate with a doctorates degree in veterinary medicine. And then I would like to open up my own veterinary practice.

Carrera
 
GRADUATED May 2016

Alyssa Carrera        Avc1@txstate.edu                                                  

MAJOR:  Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:   Mission, Texas
 
about me: 
I’m from the border town of Mission, Texas. I am interested in all things agriculture. I enjoy spending the day at the ranch, riding horses and going to livestock shows.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
In five years I will be attending vet school to earn my degree in veterinary medicine and hopefully have an internship with a doctor of veterinary medicine.

jose castro
 
GRADUATED May 2015
 
Jose Miguel Castro     Patricstar_91@hotmail.com                                                    
MAJOR:  Chemistry
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I have several hobbies.  Some of them are playing basketball and video games, baking and reading about interesting facts. I work as a math tutor and love to help others.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I see myself working as a medical doctor and helping my community in every way possible.

S Chapa Image
 
GRADUATED May 2016

Stephanie Chapa        snc4@txstate.edu                       

MAJOR:  Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN: San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I am 18 years old, soon to be 19 in June.  I have volunteered at the Humane Society in my free time. I like animals. I like to play sports and hang out with my friends and family. I am not very tall, I am 4'10.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to go to vet school and graduate to become a vet and maybe open my own practice.

J Chavez
 
GRADUATED December 2015
 
  Jacob Chavez        jchavez181@student.alamo.edu                                                  
MAJOR:  Environmental Science
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I am interested in landscape and horticulture. I play the trumpet in the PAC Jazz Ensemble. I like sports and exercise and am also interested in field research.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I hope to one day open a greenhouse and eventually become a major provider of all aspects of the landscape and horticulture science. I also wish to study and research in other countries.

DeLeon
 
GRADUATED May 2015
 
Sergio Deleon        sergio.deleon05@me.com                                                                  
MAJOR:   Nutrition/Agriculture
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I am interested in vegetable gardening, urban agriculture, aquaculture, aquaponics, fruit and vegetable production, sustainable living, spending time with my wife, dog and cat, and hanging out with family and friends.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
My goal is to establish a well-organized urban farm close to downtown San Antonio, Texas, and to promote healthy living. I want to provide my community with wholesome nutritionally de nse foods.

ditson

 
Christina Ditson      crd67@txstate.edu
 
MAJOR:  Agriculture Education   
 
HOMETOWN:  Spring, Texas
 
ABOUT ME:
My hobbies include swimming, sports, exercising and most things related to Agriculture.
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS:
I hope to become an FFA advisor and teach animal science in a high school level. I plan to obtain a Master's Degree in a field related to Agriculture.

Firova
 
GRADUATED August 2016
 
Daniel Firova Jr      Djfirova@gmail.com
 
MAJOR:   Horticulture
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Tx
 
ABOUT ME:
My name is Daniel Firova but everyone calls me DJ because I am a Jr. I come from a relatively small border city called Laredo, which is here in South Texas. The special entity about Laredo is that it is ten miles from the sun so gardening there is quite the challenge. My hobbies include gardening, reading, listening to classical music, playing basketball and soccer, fishing, playing guitar and drums, cooking, and traveling, but I am happiest when I am working with plants.
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS:
My aspirations are to complete my degree here at Texas State with honors. My goals are to open up several businesses here in the lone star state including a plant nursery, an ornamental and edible plant farm, a golf driving range with a restaurant/bar, a fertilizer company, and a landscape design company.

Abe Garcia Image

GRADUATED December 2014

 
Abraham  Garcia        Dark-naruto@hotmail.com              
 
MAJOR:  Chemistry
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I like to play video games. Science is my favorite subject. I also play the trombone.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I would like to put my best forward and help out in any way I can. I want to give back to my community just like it helped me.

D Garcia
 
GRADUATED December 2015
 
Daisy Garcia        daisy_garcia_6@yahoo.com                                                               
MAJOR:  Agriculture
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I like to be out in the fields. I am and feel most free in the fields. I enjoy riding horses, fishing, clearing brush, food and riding bikes. I have a horse named Jim who I used to go on trail rides with. I am learning how to start a horse. I also have a couple of boer goats, chickens, ducks and a ram named George. I am learning how to plow fields and learning the logistics, techniques and how to harvest. I like to read romance novels. My favorite fruits are watermelon and oranges. I enjoy going to livestock auctions across South Texas and I love to drive around the back roads on any given trip. I have high hopes.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I hope to receive a BS in agriculture-animal science with a minor in horticulture. I would like to work with the USDA to further my career as well as learn more in my field. With time, I will pursue my master's in wildlife management. My ultimate goal is to own land and produce quality animals as well as quality grains, vegetables and fruits. I also want to breed and raise exotic animals for Texas game ranches.

jessica garcia
 
GRADUATED May 2016

Jessica Garcia      jdg105@txstate.edu

 
MAJOR :  Biology
 
HOMETOWN :  League City, Texas
 
ABOUT ME :
My hobbies are fishing, reading and cooking. Also I love watching movies and taking care of animals!
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS :
I hope to become a veterinarian by first getting my undergraduate degree in biology at Texas State University then attending a veterinary school for four years.

p garcia image
 
GRADUATED May 2015
 
Patricia Garcia        pcg15@txstate.edu
  
MAJOR:   Agriculture/Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I was involved in 4-H for 10 years. I love working outside. I am also very family oriented. Some of my hobbies include camping, fishing, hiking, swimming, playing the guitar, painting, photography and long-distance running.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to work for the USDA and go to graduate school.

garza richard

 

Richard M. Garza      rmg86@txstate.edu    

MAJOR:  Aquatic Biology

HOMETOWN:  Rio Grande City, Texas

ABOUT ME: 

I love the water. Anything to do with it, whether it be the plants, animals,or just being in the water. I like to scuba dive and explore new areas of water. I also enjoy photography, and taking pictures in my aquatic adventures. I grew up near the Rio Grande River, and the Gulf of Mexico. I enjoy exploring, and making the best of what surrounds me.

CAREER ASPIRATIONS:

I strive to receive my BS in Aquatic Biology with a double major in photography, along with a minor in chemistry. I would love to work with USDA to see on how I can bring something not so common to the table and apply out in the field. After I graduate at Texas State, I want to get a job for awhile and go back to school to get a degree in Marine Biology. My dream is to become a National Geographic photographer for underwater pictures.


E Gomez


Elizabeth Gomez       eg1328@txstate.edu

 
MAJOR:  Agriculture - Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:  Pearland, Texas
 
ABOUT ME: I enjoy being involved in on campus student organizations. My hobbies include volunteering, playing sports, doing craft projects, and spending time with my family, friends, and dogs.
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS :
I want to attend graduate school to earn a Master’s and Doctorate’s and after open up my own veterinarian clinic. I plan on working with the USDA though an internship and would like to work for them as an employee.

J Gonzalez image
 
GRADUATED May 2014
 
Jessica Gonzalez        jg1878@txstate.edu

MAJOR:   General Agriculture
 
HOMETOWN:   Schertz, Texas
 
about me: 
I enjoy working with or helping students with their animal projects. I currently work at a vet clinic with small animals where I have been for five years. I love working with animals, both small animals to livestock. I raised pigs and steers while I was in high school.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to teach high school agriculture or work for the USDA.

J Graw
 
GRADUATED December 2015
 
Jewel Graw        Shootingstar2010@hotmail.com                                                        
MAJOR: Biology
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
One of the things I love to do is draw. I feel when I’m drawing it is the time that I can have all to myself to relax. I also like to paint and to make ceramics. I am currently interested in another hobby known as crochet. I volunteer at my church in the daycare and I would like to also volunteer in a place where I can work with animals to get some experience in handling them.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
Ever since I was little, I’ve always loved animals and have always hoped to work with them. I am hoping to major in biology and then branch off into wildlife biology to gain as much knowledge as I can about animals. After my schooling is over I am hoping to take part in some field research as well as a conservation program. I also plan to open a wildlife rehabilitation center to take in injured wild animals and preserve the wellness of wildlife.

M Guerra

 

 
Marcus Guerra       marcusfg28@hotmail.com                                             
MAJOR:  Environmental Science
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
My interests are organic gardening, small city gardening, aquaponics, and range free chicken egg layers. My hobbies are ocean kayaking, mountain biking, spear and spear pole fishing and hunting.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to find a career that will help farmers and ranchers improve so they can become more productive and safer.

juarez

GRADUATED August 2016

Manual Juarez, Jr.     soccer-mej@yahoo.com

MAJOR:  Agriculture
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I like to play guiter and soccer.   I love music and I also play the piano. I live on a ranch and love it there, it is my home.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
After I receive my degree in Agriculture, I want to bring back all of the knowledge and experiences gained from Texas State to my family’s ranch. There, I plan to grow and sustain fresh, organic produce that I would like to sell to local restaurants , grocery stores and at the farmer’s market. Another goal is to feed the hungry by donating the fruits of my labor to charities and organizations. If I could live and support myself on my ranch and also give back to my community, that would make me happier than I could describe.

Marcella Juarez

GRADUATED August 2016

Marcella Juarez     fifa-mij@yahoo.com                                                     
MAJOR:  Agriculture
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I have lived almost all my life on a ranch. I love being outside. I play and am very passionate about soccer. I enjoy reading, writing and drawing. I am learning to play the guitar. I am excited and ready to leave Laredo & explore. I am left-handed.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I hope to not only become self-sustainable but be able to harvest and sell organic products through aquaponic farming as well as utilizing the ranch land that my family owns. I hope to raise chickens, cattle, as well as produce and fish to not only feed myself and my family but to sell to the local farmer’s market, restaurants and to donate food to local homeless shelters. I hope and plan to utilize new green technology and eco-friendly methods to make my dreams come true as well as green energy. Through my business I hope to then teach and expose others to this “newer” way of farming and to bring awareness to both the quality and quantity of our forsaken water source, El Rio Grande.

J Lopez image
 
GRADUATED May 2014
 
Jennifer Lopez         Jal165@txstate.edu
 
MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:  Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I like shopping, dancing, cosmetology and jogging. I am the middle child of five children. I used to free-lance for a local newspaper back in my hometown of Laredo. I love spending time with my family and listening to my dad’s ghost stories
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to go to graduate school to get a master’s degree in business administration and possibly be an intern for the USDA.

Reggie Lopez
 
 
Regino Lopez      reginoL94@gmail.com             
                                
MAJOR:  Electrical Engineering
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I am a Mexican-American who is working on a bachelors in Electrical Engineering. My interests are in music, politics, and technology and my hobbies include playing guitar, basketball, reading, and managing my role as Vice-President of the MAES (Mexican Americans in Engineering and Science) chapter at LCC. I come from a middle-class family. My mother is a migrant-worker turned housewife and my father is an Electrical Technician for Verizon Wireless.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
My long-term goals include becoming a successful engineer that is working under the field of renewable energies or any engineering firm that creates technology that benefits humanity such as the team of engineers that introduced the straw purifier that allows those in Africa to drink clean water straight from any body of water. I also plan to secure myself financially by learning to manage my money efficiently and hope to later put my love of music and electronics together by creating some sort of All-Green music festival or event that would be powered by purely by renewable energies and would promote more environmentally conscious energies.

A Martinez Image

GRADUATED May 2014

Anailse Martinez        ana_mtzb@hotmail.com

 
MAJOR:  Nutrition
 
HOMETOWN:  Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I graduated from a Mexican high school institute. I love spending time with my family and friends.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I first see myself getting my registered dietician certification and a master’s degree right after graduation. I would like to work on lunch programs for schools to improve children’s alimentation.

Jesus M
 
 
Jesus  Martinez       jmartinez1573@students.laredo.edu  
 
MAJOR:  Pre-Vet
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I am a baseball player. I have wanted to be a vet since I was 12. I have been in karate since I was 7. I try to be dedicated to school as much as I can.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to be able to walk with my diploma, shaking hands with my professors as I get my degree in veterinary medicine.

M Martinez image

GRADUATED May 2015

Marissa Martinez        martinezm@txstate.edu

 
MAJOR:  Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:  San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I like to play soccer, love to shop. I graduated valedictorian of Judson High School. I love animals! Hopefully, I’ll be a vet in the near future.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to get my under-grad in animal science and hopefully go to vet school in California or Texas. Hopefully I can get an internship with APHIS in the USDA. I’ll find a spot where I fit and make it a career.

yessenia Martinez
 
GRADUATED August 2015
 
Yessenia Martinez       y_m2@txstate.edu

MAJOR:  Animal Science

HOMETOWN:  Houston, Texas

ABOUT ME: I'm Vice President of Latinas Unidas, an organization at Texas State. I love doing community service, drawing, and helping others when I can.


CAREER ASPIRATIONS :
In a few years, I would like to be a certified Veterinarian. In addition, I have also thought about teaching Animal Science. If I do decide on doing that, I will go through Teach For America. As of right now, my options are open with what I want to do with my Bachelor's Degree. I will do whatever it takes to achieve my dreams, make my family proud, and inspire others to do the same.

S Medina
 
 
Shelby Medina     Shelby-catcher@hotmail.com     
                                                     
MAJOR:  Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I am 19 years old, my life has been surrounded by animals. I am interested in animals, their health, body and behavior. My hobbies are sports and helping at animal shelters.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to major in animal science and to become a vet. I plan to hopefully become a specialist in all animals including aquatics.


M Perez Image

GRADUATED August 2016

Maricela Perez        m_p13@txstate.edu

 
MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:  LaMarque, Texas
 
about me: 
I graduated with honors and was a distinguished graduate. I enjoy painting because I was in student council during my senior year of high school. I was No.14 in my class.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I plan to go to vet school at Texas A&M in College Station, Texas. After that I plan to work as a small animal vet.

N Perez image

GRADUATED December 2014

Natalie Perez        N_p2@txstate.edu

MAJOR:  Nutrition/Foods
  
HOMETOWN:  Converse, Texas
 
about me: 
I’m a three-year high school graduate and a fluent Spanish speaker. My major interests include music, piano and guitar. I have been playing since the age of 8.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I would like to work with the USDA and focus on school lunch programs. I am open to any other opportunities the USDA has to offer. Eventually, I would like to open my own private practice clinic.

Rodriguez

GRADUATED December 2015

Candice Rodriguez        Candicerod3010@aol.com                                                    
MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
When I’m not at work or at school I like to alleviate the stresses of the day by playing the piano, the guitar, soccer or by reading or drawing. My job requires me to stay in shape so getting an adequate amount of exercise is an important part of my day.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
Preferably, I will go to graduate school. I’m not certain which one yet, but definitely higher education. God willing, whether it’s medicine or research, I hope to find something that catches my attention from the opportunities offered by the USDA grant.

Isamar Sanchez

GRADUATED December 2015

Isamar  Sanchez     

MAJOR:  Pre-Vet/Biology

HOMETOWN:  San Antonio, Texas

about me: 

I like working with kids, so I became a Sunday school teacher for toddlers at my church.  I like to spend as much time as I can with my animals, playing video games, playing soccer and eating.  I am a leader for BSM (Baptist Student Ministry) at Northwest Vista Community College and I also tutor for community science at NWV CC.

cAREER aSPIRATIONS:

I see myself being in graduate school at the college or in veterinary medicine at Texas A&M, pursuing my veterinarian career with both small and large animals.  Since I’m already grooming family members’ animals, I see myself also being a dog groomer.


sencion

GRADUATED May 2015

Carlos  Sencion      Charlieboii_818@yahoo.com 

MAJOR:  Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I am a humble person, I like to put others in front of myself. I come from a ranching family. My hopes are to be at the ranch, team roping, mudding, and being with my family. My favorite hobby is fishing.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
My career goal is to major in animal science. As a child my family ran cattle and I want to continue the family business as a side job. I plan to work for the government.

k siller
 
GRADUATED August 2016
 
Karla Siller        Karlass26@hotmail.com                                                       
MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:   Sabinas Hidalgo, Nuevo Leon, Mexico
 
about me: 
I like to go out, hang out with my friends, read and listen to music. I am from Sabinas Hidalgo. Biology has always caught my eye.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
To have a job where I can do some good for our society. That way, we can live in a better place.

solis

GRADUATED May 2015

Gabriela Solis        Live-2-see@hotmail.com                                                    

MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
about me: 
I love to play tennis, read books, bake and going to rodeos. The kind of books I like to read are adventure books and mangas. I am a math tutor and I like to help others.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
In five years, I see myself in vet school preparing to become a veterinarian. I plan to work under a veterinarian to get experience.

Soto

 
Michael R. Soto      mrs174@txstate.edu

MAJOR:  Wildlife Biology 
 
HOMETOWN:   Laredo, Texas
 
ABOUT ME:
Loving wildlife and what it consists of, the outdoors calls my name. I enjoy kayaking, going on hikes and camping with others of the same interest. Being an animal lover, I have my partner in crime who is a loving Boston terrier named "Gretta." Having interest in helping animals, I've completed 1 1/2 years working at a veterinary clinic where I assisted great veterinarians and was able to experience many opportunities. I recently joined Texas States Wildlife Society where I am being introduced into many projects involving resource conservation and environment development. On my free time I volunteer with the Texas Parks and Wildlife's Fish Hatchery here in San Marcos, Texas. 
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS: 
As a short-term goal, I plan on achieving a (BS) in Wildlife Biology where I'll have two options once that is achieved. As a long-term goal, I either plan on continuing my studies in Graduate school with Wildlife Ecology or seeking a career as a Texas Game Warden, where protecting and serving wildlife will be my main mission.

souza
 
GRADUATED May 2015
 
Carolina Souza       css77@txstate.edu
 
MAJOR:   Animal Science
 
HOMETOWN:   Austin, Texas
 
ABOUT ME:
My hobbies are volunteering at the Humane Society, anything that involves animals. Also I do enjoy going to church with my family and hanging out with my youth group as well.
 
CAREER ASPIRATIONS:
I hope one day to work for either one of these departments within the USDA, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Food Safety and Inspection Service and lastly Foreign Agricultural Service. 

stence
 
GRADUATED December 2015
 
Heidi Stence      hstence@yahoo.com                                  
 
MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I love animals and the outdoors. I enjoy volunteering at the zoo. I was born in Peru in South America. I am bilingual in English and Spanish. In my free time I enjoy reading, spending time with my family and friends. I also enjoy art, I like to draw.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
I want to become a wildlife biologist.  I want to finish my bachelor’s degree at Texas State, I would also like to obtain a master’s degree as well. I would like to become more involved in animal research and animal habitat conservation.

Verastegui
 
GRADUATED December 2015
 
Samuel Verastegui       Sverastegui1@student.alamo.edu                                                      
MAJOR:  Biology
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
During the week, I am always busy with classes and homework. When I do get a chance to relax, I try to spend as much time as I can with family and my dogs Sumo and Boo. I love outdoor activities like hiking, biking, playing sports and horse riding. I have a passion for making music. I play drums, bass and the saxophone. I am also attempting to learn guitar. I am a first-generation U.S. citizen, born to Mexican parents. They are the reason for my dedication to school. They never had a chance for a good education. That is why I have continued my education.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
My love for the outdoors has helped me decide to pursue a career in wildlife biology. Eventually, I want to film my own documentaries.

Way image
 
GRADUATED May 2015
 
Emily Way                                                                
MAJOR:  Nutrition
 
HOMETOWN:   San Antonio, Texas
 
about me: 
I love working out and kickboxing. I love spending time with my family and especially my nephew. I love going out to the lake with friends. I like walking in parks and taking random drives anywhere. I also like listening to music and watching movies. I work at HEB right now.
 
cAREER aSPIRATIONS:
In five years, I see myself already practicing in my field as a dietician. I will probably be a nutritionist at the time, but I will work my way up to being a dietician. I know I have to start off working in a hospital or a nursing home, but I hope to move onto something bigger and better after then.