Emanuel Rodriguez

Emanuel Rodriguez

Name: Emanuel Rodriguez
Age: 22
Major: English
Hometown: San Juan, Texas

I chose to attend UTRGV because of the University’s close proximity to home and the very affordable tuition rate. I also have family members who have graduated from the university, so it has almost become a tradition to attend this school.

What made you decide on your current major?
I decided to become an English major in high school after having some great educators help influence me in developing a strong interest in literature. As a theatre student in high school, that interest was further developed, along with interest in public performance and speaking skills.

What are your plans after graduation?
With my degree and teaching certification, I plan on becoming an educator so that I too can inspire students to develop an interest in reading and literacy. In this community, there is a majority of our population who are bilingual and come from Hispanic/Latino homes. I hope to introduce our students to Chicano authors while also educating them on the traditional canonical texts, so that they can see their culture represented in literature along with more traditional literary works. 

What are you involved in on and off campus?
Currently I am participating in the Clinical Teaching program with UTRGV. I have over two-and-a-half years of experience working in middle and high schools, and I work part-time at a restaurant. Most of my college duration, I have balanced two jobs along with studying, which does not allow time for much community involvement. 

What is your biggest accomplishment to date?
I have made the Dean’s List several times throughout my college career, which has been a big accomplishment, and I am also proud to be going through the process of becoming a certified teacher through a program here at UTRGV. Two of my most recent notable accomplishments are passing the two required exams for my teaching certification on the first try, which required months of preparation leading up to both exams.   

What advice do you have for future students?
For future students, my advice is to enjoy their subject of study and find study habits that suit their learning style. Personally, I find taking notes to be a crucial element for success in my classes. I try just writing down as much information as possible during lecture and to study, I simply review the notes. The second strategy which has really helped is finding audiobooks of lengthier texts. I would also highly encourage future students to also find a hobby or activity to be involved with outside of school, to relieve stress and invest time in personal leisure (work doesn’t count).