(WACO, Texas) – The current global climate has brought unforeseen bumps in the road for Texas State Technical College students. However, Marissa Hunsucker is one of many who have proven that despite trials and tribulations, there is nothing that can get in the way of those who are “TSTC strong.”

The Waco native recently utilized the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund to help her and her family financially as she continues her studies. Expected to graduate next year, she is grateful for the opportunity not only to make it through her studies, but also for the chance to reiterate that TSTC students do not have to face difficult circumstances alone.

“I grew up less than a mile from campus,” said the Occupational Safety Compliance Technology student. “I knew that TSTC offered a wide variety of degree programs.”

Her past work experience motivated her to pursue an Associate of Applied Science degree in the program.

“When I was working in road construction, I saw firsthand how unsafe some of the situations we were put in on a daily basis were,” she recalled. “I want to hopefully make a difference for those who deal with road and infrastructure work. I want to create a safer work environment.”

The 25-year-old’s ultimate goal is to make a difference for others. But this semester, CARES Act funds made a difference for her.

“The funds helped me pay my utility bills and keep internet access,” Hunsucker said. “We were able to repair our only vehicle and keep food on the table.”

Despite having gone through hardships of her own, she has not lost her motivation to continue her degree with the desire to change lives. She also has a few words of encouragement for fellow TSTC students who may be experiencing tough times of their own.

“Keep thinking positive, and know that this is only temporary,” she said. “Stay determined and focused. Always ask for help when you need it. At TSTC, you never have to face something difficult alone.”

To learn more about CARES Act Funds at TSTC, visit https://www.tstc.edu/student_life/caresact.


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