Who are your dependents?
Elijah – 14 years old, Hendrix – 12 years old, Leland -10 years old, and Evangeline – 8 years old (in 2021).
What is your favorite thing about being a student with dependents at UT?
I love being able to share my experience as a college student with them. They’ve been to campus multiple times with me to see the turtle pond, for Explore UT, to turn in lab reports, or talk with professors. A few have even attended a class here and there with me (with approval from my teachers, of course). They get to experience a college campus without the stress of being a student there yet, so they have so much fun.
What is the most challenging thing about being a student with a dependent?
Hands down scheduling. I have to arrange child care when I have a test in the evening, or when I have a big test coming up I have to pull long hours to study.
What advice would you give to a student with dependents applying to UT?
There are a lot of people who will be quick to say you can’t do this with kids, but you absolutely can. It takes a lot of hard work, but if you’re dedicated you will find a way. Pull your kids into it, too: “WE go to UT. WE all have a part to play, so that we can all be successful.” The kids are just as excited that I go to UT as I am. They want to see me succeed, and if they feel like they can contribute to that, there’s less chance for resentment. It doesn’t make getting them to do their chores easier, but it does make them feel like there’s more of a purpose to them.
What has been your favorite class so far?
Voice. I love to sing, and as a non-music major I’ve been able to take voice classes with graduate students and professors almost every semester I’ve been at UT. It’s a little something just for me and keeps learning fun.
If you had one tip for students with dependents, what would it be?
Don’t be afraid to talk to the other students. They could be my kids and that’s weird, but they’re all pretty friendly. And most of all, remember that they’re more afraid of you than you are of them.
What is one thing you cannot live without as a parent?
My calendar. When classmates see it, they freak out. I have my classes on it including test dates, learning material info, etc., my kid’s sports schedules, dance classes, their school holiday schedules, pick up times, doc spots, etc. It’s intense, but it keeps me organized.
What were your children’s first words?
Ma ma ma ma ma.
What is your favorite thing about being a Longhorn?
Being apart of a long tradition of amazing hardworking people. The school spirit is fun, too.
What are your plans for after graduation?
This has changed for me recently. My plan was always to be a surgeon since I was a little girl. I was recently diagnosed with a weird rare cancer in November 2020. While I thought we were through with it, I found out it’s come back. So medical school is on hold for now. My plans are to graduate, beat this cancer, and spend as much time as I can with my kids during it all. I’ll figure out future plans later.
Is there anything else that you would like to share?
You’ve got this. Get plugged in and find the support you need to succeed.