Paying it Forward - 2007 Profiles

Andrew Garza

Alumnus - Fresno, California

Andrew was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis as a child — he was frequently hospitalized, and the rare disease prevented him from leading a normal childhood. Andrew's chronic illness did not prevent him from pursuing a higher education. He earned his associate's degree from Heald Business College, and went on to get a bachelor's degree from University of Phoenix. Andrew's six daughters motivated him to graduate — he wanted to show them the benefits of higher education firsthand. His bachelor's degree helped him reach the managerial level at a California State Prison, and increased his salary considerably. Andrew nominated his father, Andrew Garza Sr., to receive the Paying it Forward℠ Scholarship as a way to say thank you for his many sacrifices.

Andrew Garza Sr.

Recipient - Fresno, California

Andrew Sr. could not afford to attend college. He earned a G.E.D. while serving in the military and went on to receive vocational training as an automotive technician. Andrew Sr. worked in the automotive industry for more than 30 years and now owns his own business, Andrew's Auto Center. When his own children were grown, he adopted a son, now 12, and is in the process of adopting the boy's three-year-old brother. He wants to teach his adopted children that every day is a learning experience and that one is never too old to get a college education. He hopes to mentor his young employees and encourage them to pursue higher education. The Paying it Forward℠ Scholarship will allow him to earn his bachelor's degree at University of Phoenix.

Alumni Nominator and Recipient Profiles

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