things that matter

Fresno State Knows How To Throw A Fiesta With California’s Largest Latino Commencement Ceremony

cntheshot / Instagram

Fresno State’s graduation, Saturday at the Save Mart Center, was the largest class in the school’s history with more than 6,200 students meeting requirements.

But it’s the school’s Chicano and Latino Commencement Celebration that really is making headlines. It’s the largest event of its kind in California.

Credit: @Fresno_State

The community came out to represent and represent they did. It was the largest group the university has ever seen in 43 years of hosting the event.

Si se pudo!

This year, nearly 1,200 Latinos crossed the finish line and because it was so full there were nearly 100 more on a waiting list!

Credit: @MLemus25

Seriously, people were waiting outside in the rain because the Save Mart Center, where the ceremony was held, had reached capacity.

Nearly half an hour into the ceremony, event organizers had to ask people to stop saving seats because family and friends were stuck outside in the rain trying to get in.

In an interview with the Fresno Bee, University First Lady Mary Castro referred to the huge attendance as “Bruno Mars numbers.”

Now that is serious graduation goals.

The commencement ceremony was a pure reflection and celebration of the Chicano and Latino identity.

Credit: @DanzantesAztlan / Twitter

The graduates and their families were serenaded by Mariachi Fresno State which played all the classics, including ‘Marcha de Zacatecas, and the traditional Mexican farewell song ‘Las Golondrinas.’

Then there was a 20-minute performance by Los Danzantes de Aztlan.

Many graduates took to Twitter to express their Latino pride and share their stories of struggle and success.

Credit: @Yaacckiiee / Twitter

Many in this year’s graduating class were the first of their family to graduate from college. Others expressed how much pride and gratitude they had for their families, friends, even dogs, who all came together to help contribute to their success.

Some were just grateful for how much pride Fresno State takes in its Chicano and Latino-identifying students.

Credit: @_topaaaz / Twitter

Like for real though, this is the biggest event of its kind in California and according to organizers possibly in the entire country. That deserves some serious respect.

Others took to Twitter to remind us that even at commencement ceremonies, we still know how to do great chisme.

Credit: @alphxlys / Twitter

Like shoutout to this señora for keeping it real.

And then there was this girl who’s novio just may win for best graduation gift. Ever.

Novios and novias take note: this is how you do graduation gifts.

READ: Her Parents Worked In Fields For 25 Years To Give Her The Opportunity To Go To College, So She Honored Their Sacrifices With This Graduation Photoshoot

This Woman Lost It When She Witnessed Her Uber Driver Read His Acceptance To Harvard And It’s The Purest Explosion Of Emotion I’ve Seen

Things That Matter

This Woman Lost It When She Witnessed Her Uber Driver Read His Acceptance To Harvard And It’s The Purest Explosion Of Emotion I’ve Seen

Unfortunately, we see a lot of terrible stories associated with Uber and other ride-share apps but this definitely isn’t one of them. No, this story of persistence, hard work and the power of being genuinely happy for other people’s success is making the rounds and we can’t stop watching it.

On, July 14th, 2019, Twitter user @718rubyy went viral when she tweeted a short video of her recent Uber ride.

Twitter / @718rubyy

In the tweet, she explains that her Uber driver shared with her that she might just be his lucky charm. What might have read as a pickup line, is actually some really awesome news. The tweet explains that — after two years of trying — the unnamed Uber driver has finally been accepted into Harvard University!

“My God, guys! My Uber driver got into Harvard,” she can be heard cheering. “Black Excellence!”

As if that good news wasn’t enough, the response of his passenger made the announcement even better. The Dominicana Uber patron can be heard on the video celebrating and hyping up her driver.

Her Uber driver took the congratulations with a balance of pride and shyness — ducking away from the camera while recording.

Twitter was quick to join in on the congratulations for this Harvard-bound young man.

Twitter / @Ant_OnPoint

This Twitter user had some words of encouragement and advice for the new Harvard student. When you’ve got good momentum, don’t slow down. We’re sure he’ll keep working towards his unquestionably bright future.

Others users pointed out that his passenger’s excitement on video is positively infectious.

Twitter / @Jodemoted
Twitter / @keetron6000

This Dominicana must know that when one of us win, we all win. So, naturally, it makes sense to celebrate this young man’s accomplishments with the energy that we see on the video.

Some Twitter users suggested the Harvard student should continue to explore his luck.

Twitter / @Sirdarius97

Luck isn’t everything. We’re sure getting into Harvard took a lot of hard work as well. STILL, this new student should take full advantage of this good luck streak and hope for more positivity coming his way.

Like any good story, followers have been looking for the romance in this tale.

Twitter / @r8gue

In fact, some were projecting their own romantic hopes for the pair. No word if there’s a love connection resulting from this Uber meet-cute, but we’ll keep an eye out for updates. In the meantime, we ship it.

However, some Twitter users saw it more as an ingenious pick-up line instead of true love.

Twitter / @cubanlxs

We can see how it would seem that way but the news looks pretty genuine. Either way, we respect his game if it’s truly a line.

No matter what you feel about a possible romance between the two, one thing was agreed upon by all.

Twitter / @brazillianphil

Uber story or not, this is the kind of content we like to see on the TL. Good luck at Harvard next year, mystery Uber driver!

Check out the full video below!

We Are Loving The Respect And Credit These Grads Are Giving Their Farm Working Parents For Their Sacrifices To Give Their Kids The World

Things That Matter

We Are Loving The Respect And Credit These Grads Are Giving Their Farm Working Parents For Their Sacrifices To Give Their Kids The World

Graduation ceremonies are a little slice of life and society. Behind every cap and stole there are stories of heroism and struggle not only involving the graduates but often having to do with their parents. Moms and dads all over the world have done their best to see their children enjoy better opportunities in life. As the value of labor has shifted from privileging manual work and trades to giving more to those who work with information, traditional occupations such as farming have been affected by a decline in wages and by the crushing shadow of big companies (nowadays it is very hard for any farmer to subsist on their own). That is why stories that involve farmer parents seeing their kids graduate from university are so inspiring. If you have worked in the fields as a picker or even if you have done some gardening under the blistering sun you know how much of a toll working in a field can take on your body. If you haven’t, look to a father’s or uncle’s or Abuelo’s hands and focus on the callous surface that endless hours of working with la tierra has done to the skin. Every wrinkle tells a story of survival and proud trabajo

In honor of farmers worldwide, and to celebrate Farm Workers Day, we have chosen some inspirational snippets of life featuring graduates and their farmer parents, who worked with their hands so their offspring’s mind could thrive. There are not enough ways to say gracias, are there? 

This graduate who honors her farmer parents

Credit: Twitter. @UCMerced

Merced Anna Ocegueda is a Latina college senior who graduated from University of California, Merced, earlier this year. This 22-year-old psychology major posted this picture on Twitter. As they say, una imagen dice + que mil palabras. Her parents are still wearing their picking equipment. Her post went viral and soon newspapers started knocking in the door. Ocegueda told The Fresno Bee: “My parents came here for a better future and a better life for their children. “The educational opportunities weren’t great. My parents encouraged me to better my education so I wouldn’t have to work in the fields like them.” 

For Selena Huapilla-Perez graduation she dressed up in her cap and gown and posed in the fruit fields alongside her parents to honor their sacrifice as farmers. ⁣

@SelenaHuapilla

In a post about her gruadtion, Huapilla said “I always tell my parents, my sisters and brother that this belongs more to them than to me.” This year she graduated with a degree in Interdisciplinary Humanities from Michigan State University. ⁣

This recent grad went above and beyond to make her dreams come true, thanks to her hard work, and her parent’s struggles.

@alfaroerica47b | Instagram

Erica Alfaro, a 29-year-old, dedicated her master’s degree with her parents and celebrated with a powerful photoshoot where they work.

This Brazilian queen who thanked her farmer parents during her graduation ceremony

Credit: YouTube. @AlamedaCasaEditorial

It is a moment worthy of a few tears. A Brazilian student stops the party, descends the stairs and calls her parents. Everyone claps. They all know that her family is de origen humilde and that they have moved Heaven and Earth for her to be there. You can watch this tender and empowering moment here

Farmer parents sure teach some good ethics and excellent saving skills

Credit: Twitter. @KillerPunchZero

If precarious conditions can teach you anything is that you gotta take care of what you got. Farming is such a serendipitous occupation (a flood or a tornado can wipe out the years harvest and any earnings for the coming months, as many farmers have recently experienced throughout our climate-change-stricken planet), that those que trabajan en el campo know that life is better with no debt. What a great lesson. Hard work, dedication. 

De tal palo tal astilla

Credit: Twitter. @BigDuce79

So who is proud of who? The farmer father who sent his son to college or the son whose father sent him? Well, it is both. Struggle can either bring people closer together or split them apart. We hope it is always the latter. 

Can you spare a minute and read this amazing story?

Credit: Facebook. Humans of Bombay

India is a country where social mobility is almost impossible. Many regions of the Southeast Asian country still live under a caste system that basically translates in zero opportunities for those who are born with nothing or with very little. That is why this story from the amazing storytelling collective Humans of Bombay is so powerful. It is the story of a father who had to migrate to the city from his farming village. There, he leads a simple life but makes sure his son goes to university. The son’s attitude will melt your heart. Does the story sound familiar? We are sure it resonates with many Latino families across the United States. 

The son of a Filipino farmer who got a full scholarship at Harvard

Credit: filipino-farmer-son-gets-full-scholarship-from-harvard-university-proves-hard-work-beats-fate-2.jpg. Digital image. The Development Times

The Philippines is one of the most unequal countries in the world, an impoverished nation that up until today has failed to keep up with other Asian economies. As much as 15% of Filipinos work overseas as domestic workers or construction workers. Those who live in the country need to work extra hard just to make ends meet. So the story of Romnick Blanco, the son of a rice and vegetable farmer, is the stuff that dreams are made of. He received a full scholarship to study at Harvard after excelling at his high school in Manila. By the way, he had to cross a river every single day to go to school

Credit: q2-5. Digital image. Readers Portal.

His father was a cocoa farmer and his mother sold coal, he is now a graduate from the University of Pennsylvania

 
Credit: IMG_20180419_173741. Digital image. Savannah News Online

Conditions for farmers in Africa are tough, as multinational corporations pay low wages for prices products such as cocoa.  Shadrack Osei Frimpong is a Ghanian dynamo who excelled at school and made his way to the United States. He is now giving back to his community, establishing a tuition-free girls’ school in his village. What an inspiring young man. Those who succeed despite a tough beginning are often the most generous and amazing human beings. African youth face many challenges, including guerrilla warfare, human trafficking and disease, so it is amazing to see ow someone from a rural area could actually work towards better conditions not only for himself, but for his whole community. 

Last but not least, this Indonesian son of farmers who graduated from Columbia University in New York City

Credit: 10.-Graduation-S2-1. Digital Image. Mengglobal Indonesia

Robinson Sinurat is the fifth child of a family of seven. His parents did not finish their schooling because of financial struggles, so the odds were stacked against Robinson. He knew that he wanted to study physics, so he borrowed money from a friend to pay for university fees in Indonesia and ate only once a day. After graduating from college he worked in an NGO in the capital city of Jakarta, where he started studying English to apply for graduate school. His academic and professional accomplishments caught the eye of Columbia… and the rest, as they say, is history. You can read all about his improbable journey here.

This hombre hermoso from Thailand whose dirty clothes speak of a tough life

Credit: Facebook. @Chesney O’Donnell

The contrast is striking. This Thai farmer almost looks shy in front of the camera. The moraleja is clear: be very, very thankful for everything that your parents have done for you. 

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