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Mendez Leaves Behind Legacy as Student Leader at TSTC

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
By Eladio Jaimez

Tara MendezAs Tara Mendez prepares for her final month as a student at Texas State Technical College, she can't help but reflect on how big of an impact TSTC has had on her life the past couple of years.

And conversely, Mendez has impacted the college as well.

Mendez served her final week as Student Government Association (SGA) President this week and leaves behind a solid legacy as a student leader at TSTC.

"Our goal was always to get more students, faculty and staff involved in our campus," Mendez said. "And I think at the end of the day, we did that."

Some of the highlights from Mendez's administration include the Lunch Rewards Program, which gives an individual a free lunch after purchasing seven. SGA was also able to add businesses to the discount card provided to students and "the big one" was moving forward with the renovation of the Cafeteria in the Student Center.

"I didn't do it all alone," Mendez said. "My officers worked hard every day to make our campus better for our students. And the previous officers helped with the renovations of the cafeteria. It's been a team effort."

But while the humble Mendez will not take full credit for her administration's accomplishments, she did garner plenty of individual accolades during her time at TSTC.

Mendez, who'll be graduating with an Associates of Applied Science from the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (ACT) Program next month, was recently awarded the Inspiration Award. This recognition is awarded to a female student in a field of study traditionally dominated by men.

Former ACT Program Chair Ruben De La Rosa said Mendez was a one-of-a-kind student.

"I wish the guys were more like Tara," De La Rosa said. "She was an outstanding student and was never afraid to stand up to a challenge. This program was all new to her but she learned every day and worked hard ,"

Mendez also graduated from the Mustang Leadership Academy and the Service Squad.

In fact, she is a recipient of the prestigious President's Volunteer Service Award, which comes directly from the office of the President of the United States of America.

"I give all credit to my instructor and sponsors for helping me on this journey," Mendez said. "They all helped me. If I needed tutoring, they were there to help me out. I couldn't have done this without their help."

Mendez also has three job offers waiting for her decision after graduation. Valley Coca-Cola in McAllen, George Cunningham Company in Harlingen and Gem Air Supply House also in Harlingen have expressed interest in Mendez's services.

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