First-generation college graduate Luis Pina congratulates himself on being a role model

Luis Pina Munoz graduated Monday from Western Nevada College with an Associate of Arts degree.

Luis Pina Munoz realizes he has a lot of eyes on him as he becomes the first in his family to graduate from college.

The first-generation student is graduating from Western Nevada College with an Associate of Arts degree this week, and he knows how important his academic achievement is at home.

“As the oldest brother in my family, this was one of the biggest motivations for me to continue my education beyond high school,” Pina said. “I know my younger siblings look up to me and it makes me happy to be able to be a role model for them. I feel it’s my duty to show them that it’s achievable.

Pursuing a college education was made possible for Pina through federal assistance provided by the Pell Grant and Nevada Promise, a state-funded scholarship and mentorship program available to high school students up to three years of age. studying at a community college.

This financial aid and scholarship helped Pina focus on her studies.

“Grants and scholarships have been a huge help in my education as they have allowed me to work fewer hours, helping me to focus more on school rather than work,” said Pine. “I’m very grateful for the grants I received because they allowed me to really focus on school. »

WNC Director of Financial Aid, JW Lazzari, has befriended Pina over the past two years and is very impressed with her work ethic and friendliness.

“Luis is a super hard worker and a great person. I look forward to seeing him achieve his goals. I know he has the drive and work ethic to succeed,” Lazzari said.

While attending WNC, Pina appreciated the flexibility that the college’s online and in-person classes gave her. But attending college presented unexpected challenges.

“The biggest hurdle I’ve encountered going to college has been learning to find a balance in my life where I can focus on school and stay motivated while managing my personal life,” said Pine.

The future is bright for Pina as he intends to continue his college education after graduating from WNC. After taking a few more courses at the WNC, he plans to transfer to Truckee Meadows Community College for admission into its X-ray technology program. To achieve these academic milestones, he credits his two biggest supporters at home.

“I got my work ethic from my parents,” he said. “They work very hard and I feel like they have a duty because they have worked my whole life to make sure I have the opportunity to pursue higher education. That’s why I put so much effort in my work.

Luis Pina Munoz says the biggest obstacle he faced going to college was learning to find a balance in his life between school and his personal life.

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