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Fall 2012 Commencement

Saturday, December 15, 2012
By Eladio Jaimez

Alisa and Linda Noelle -Fall 2012 GraduatesHARLINGEN — Saturday was quite the special day for the Noelle family.

Linda Noelle was the first name announced at the Texas State Technical College fall commencement ceremony at the Cultural Arts Center.

Noelle earned that distinction by being a Board of Regents Honors student and graduating with a 4.0 grade point average.

She earned an associate's degree in culinary arts.

But she wasn't the only Noelle walking across the stage.

Her daughter, Alisa, also earned a certificate of completion of her core academic classes and graduated with honors.

"I'm more happy to see her graduate," Alisa said. "She did it and she did it with honors. It's a great accomplishment and I'm very proud of her."

The Noelle's were two of 154 graduates to earn either an associate's degree or certificate of completion.

For Linda Noelle, it's been a long but pleasant journey.

Linda and her husband, Richard, home-schooled their 10 children.

Alisa is the penultimate of the siblings and a couple of years ago Linda realized she was going to have a lot of free time on her hands.

"My husband really encouraged me to go back to school," Linda said.

Linda knows her way around a kitchen fairly well. But she said pursuing her degree in culinary arts was more about learning the technical aspect of the industry.

"I've had experience volunteering at church or camps," Linda said.

Linda plans to pursue a bachelor's degree from the University Center at TSTC.

For Alisa, this is the start of a new chapter as she will move to San Marcos in January to pursue a bachelor's degree from Texas State University. She plans to major in finance and minor in education.

"I just want to find a stable career," Alisa said.

Spawglass South Texas Region president Rene Capistran served as guest speaker at the commencement.

Capistran's message was simple.

"You will change the world," Capistran said. "You'll need four things. Vision to know where you're going. Passion, it's the DNA of life. You'll need integrity and you'll need to believe in yourself.

"Enjoy what you're going to do and follow your own path."

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