When Cuauhtemoc started taking dual-credit courses at Westside High School, his mother started to push him to get a college degree. While attending college was something the College Possible graduate was told to do throughout his school years, it wasn’t until he started applying to colleges and scholarships that he began to understand the value a college degree could have in his life.
Going through college was one of the coolest experiences I’ve ever had. It’s much more than just getting a degree. It’s about challenging yourself and expanding the type of people you’re going to meet in your life,” he says.
During his second year at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO), the COVID-19 pandemic changed the trajectory of Cuauhtemoc’s college experience. Classes went online, and he felt much less connected to his college community. Being online made him feel like he was missing out on the crucial aspects of a college experience. He says he considered leaving his university and pursuing other opportunities without a college degree. However, Cuauhtemoc remained hopeful that he’d get to return to the classroom one day.
I was relieved the day I got to enroll for in-person classes again at the beginning of my senior year. In-person learning allowed me to connect with my classmates and professors on a deeper level, which is what college is all about,” he says.
While the pandemic impacted his college journey, he says his College Possible college coach encouraged him to keep going. His coach helped him enroll in classes, stay on top of his financial aid, and more. “My coaches always gave me great advice on how to balance things in college like my finances, classes and internships,” he recalls. “They were super supportive and really helped me finish strong at UNO.”
Cuauhtemoc says placing second in UNO’s Capstone Cup made him feel confident about starting his post-college career. A requirement for all business administration majors, the Capstone Cup is a competition in which students create a business plan for a local business. This year’s contest focused on the Scooter’s Coffee chain. Cuauhtemoc says developing a business pitch and sharing it with the Scooter’s executives made him excited to use his degree in the workforce.
After successfully obtaining his business administration degree, Cuauhtemoc started his first career job with Guardian Angel eCommerce in a remote position, working with clients to build their advertising practices. He says he looks forward to traveling while he works remotely to gain new experiences that will one day help him start his own business.