Spring 2023 Graduation Spotlight: Meet Marissa Gámez

Congrats Grads Graphics

Austin Community College District (ACC) celebrates more than 2,740 graduates at its spring 2023 commencement ceremony. This commencement ceremony marks the college’s 50th anniversary.

Friends and family are invited to congratulate students Friday, May 12, at the H-E-B Center in Cedar Park.

One of those students is Marissa Gámez. Marissa is the spring 2023 Chancellor’s Student Achievement Award recipient. Hear more about her journey at ACC.

Written by: Marissa Gamez

Austin Community College Spring 2023 Chancellor's Student Achievement Award recipient Marissa Gamez

Tell me about your time at ACC: I am not only an upcoming ACC graduate but also a full-time ACC employee with our Upward Bound program and formally a Financial aid Counselor in Student Affairs. I have been afforded the pleasure and privilege of becoming familiar with the student experience as both a student and employee, allowing me to help improve our processes for all. I am a non-traditional student who found my passion for helping others through experiencing life in the workforce for 11 years, struggling to provide for my family, and searching for my purpose. I found that I am passionate about helping others and providing resources to help them succeed. Through this realization, I decided to pursue my degree in social work. As a mother, full-time employee, and student involved in multiple outreach initiatives and student organizations. I would love to share my story with others to help provide hope that achieving your dreams is possible.

How does it feel to be graduating: It’s difficult to say how much this means to me. I can’t believe I am going to be a college graduate! I have worked hard to reach this milestone and am truly blessed to be here. I am getting closer and closer to my goal of becoming a social worker and being able to assist my community in a big way. This is an accomplishment I will cherish. 

What was your favorite part of ACC: The collaboration! As both a student and employee, I’ve been able to have my voice heard about different opportunities we have as a college to improve the student experience. I love the flexibility of my schedule and how ACC offers many classes in various formats to fit my needs. As a working mother, taking virtual asynchronous courses was the only way I could obtain this degree. 

Any faculty or staff you want to recognize supporting you: Kendra Singletary. Kendra has been my advisor since I considered returning to college in 2018. She was so patient with me and encouraging. She made me feel like I belonged here even though I initially thought I didn’t because of my age and didn’t do well in college 15 years ago when I began. She was never pushy; she was reassuring and wanted to work with my schedule. She encouraged me to talk about my goals for the future. I told her I wanted to go to the University of Texas. Kendra was very open about what I needed to do to reach that goal. Kendra helped keep me motivated and encouraged me throughout my semester. She was always ready and willing to set up a time to speak with me about my schedule and goals. I don’t know what I would do without Kendra. She is the reason I decided to pursue my degree. 

What is next for you: I have applied to The University of Texas at Austin’s Steve Hicks School of Social Work. I plan to earn my bachelor’s and then a master’s in social work. I have also applied to Angelo State University to explore online options to pursue my degree in a way that works for my schedule. 

What would you tell someone considering applying for college: Do it! Anything is possible, especially at ACC. So many resources are available to help you succeed, from Advising, Financial Aid, Student Money Management Office, FREE tutoring, the ACCelerator, and so much more! ACC makes it hard for you not to succeed. I encourage everyone considering applying to reimagine their future at ACC. The sky is the limit. ACC helps you reach your dreams and prepares you for your future.

Tags: , , , , ,

Back to Top

One Response to "Spring 2023 Graduation Spotlight: Meet Marissa Gámez"