Graduate Spotlight: Omar Salazar at Trinidad “Trini” Garza Early College High School

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Graduation season is happening May 29–June 7, and in honor of Dallas ISD graduates, The Hub is spotlighting a different senior each day as the Class of 2015 prepares to take their anticipated walk across the stage.

Today we learn about Omar Salazar at Trinidad “Trini” Garza Early College High School.

Awards/honors, involvement: Southern Methodist University Hunt Leadership Scholar, College Board’s AP Scholar with Distinction, Young Science Achievers Program grant recipient: conducted research that studied alternative energy, National Honor Society, Valedictorian

The biggest lesson I’ve learned in school: I have learned that hard work can get you anywhere you want to go. You can’t just do what is expected; you have to be willing to go the extra mile in order to succeed.

The teacher who inspired me the most: Mr. O’Connor is not a teacher, but an educator. Though he is an excellent instructor, he does way more than just get up at the board and teach chemistry or environmental science lessons. Our generation needs this kind of educator, someone who, if you’re willing to work, will do anything within his reach to do what’s best for you. If he sees an opportunity for students, he will take time out from his busy schedule to make sure students take advantage of it.

What/who motivates me: My parents are my motivation. Not having the opportunity to get an education themselves, they instilled in me the importance of education. Their hard work ethic and sense of family unity and pride served as fuel for my upbringing and academic success. My parents, at an early age, instilled in me that one must approach work, not as something you have to do, but as an opportunity to get better. They have taught me that I always have to put 100 percent into everything I do, and that has served me well in my academic endeavors. Most importantly, they have taught me priceless values and morals.

What’s next: In the fall, I will be attending Southern Methodist University pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering with a biomedical focus. I want to perform research that can contribute to the development of neurological and mechanical devices that will aid thousands of people who suffer from the loss of a limb or the pain and suffering left from an illness or traumatic event.

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