The Miller Family: Part Two

Ron: Well, I believe that her professors and mentors have been a big part of everything she does. She always comes home and talks about the things they discussed and the ideas they gave her. They provided direction on which way to go. We always told her, “Do what you want, we’re here supporting you.” My wife could probably bring up some of the mentors, but there were so many people who took her hand and guided her in the direction she needed to go, right here at the school. The professors here have been incredible, and she’s flourished.


Elizabeth: Sometimes I’m jealous of her vocabulary, but TAMIU literally took me by the hand since I was 17, even before I became a student. My science fair teacher, Miss Veronica, brought us to TAMIU for a STEM conference, where I met my first mentor, Dr. Marcus Enalis. He did a presentation about randomization in research experiments. I had heard that term during an international competition when a judge asked me about my random sample selection. At the time, I didn’t know what it meant, so I asked Dr. Enalis about it. He was impressed and agreed to mentor me. We discussed my research project, and he signed the document to be my research mentor.


From then on, a whole team of TAMIU mentors supported me, even before I was an official student. They helped me compete at the state and international levels. Once I re-entered TAMIU as an official student, Dr. Enalis and other professors like Dr. James O’Meara, Dr. Faltis, Dr. Gil, and Dr. Paa were incredible guides throughout my journey.


My mom has read all my papers before I submit anything, and she’s like The Writing Center of TAMIU. My friends and other TAMIU students also come to her for help. My dad, on the other hand, is the cook who keeps us fed. Because my mentor supported me, I wanted to do the same for my mentees at the Boys and Girls Club. As a Learning Center teacher, I collaborated with the Boys and Girls Club to bring kids to TAMIU for the “TAMIU After Dark” tour. We showed them different fields of study, how to finance their education, and took them to the Planetarium. By the end of the field trip, over 50 kids were inspired to say they wanted to go to the university.


Ron: We have to give thanks to all the faculty and staff, but also to the Sanchez Foundation. As a high school student, Elizabeth was a Sanchez Scholar, which provided her a full ride at TAMIU. This support is something we emphasize to our Boys and Girls Club kids—that anything is possible if you apply for scholarships. TAMIU offers incredible financial support for students. The partnerships TAMIU has created, both locally and internationally, help support and create relationships essential for student success. It truly takes a village, and TAMIU has built a strong one.

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