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March Model Ram - Jimmy Sánchez, Jr.

February 28, 2017

This month’s Model Ram is Jimmy Sánchez. Jimmy is a reporter, editor and photographer at Conexión San Angelo. In his free time, Jimmy enjoys playing guitar and biking. 

Name: Jimmy Sanchez, Jr.

Please give us a little bit of your background, your hobbies, what you like to do you in your spare time, etc. 
I attended Angelo State University from 2001-2006 as a nontraditional student. In December 2006, I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree. My major was in communication with a minor in journalism.
For fun, I like to play my guitar, listen to music: Lady Gaga’s Million Reasons, Justin Timberlake’s Mirrors,  N Sync’s I Want You Back, John Legend’s All of Me, etc.
When it comes to exercise, I ride my 5-speed bicycle. I also enjoy taking photographs.
As for movies I enjoyed watching, recently, Hidden Figures, Collateral Beauty, Hacksaw Ridge.

What is your current occupation? I currently work for Conexión San Ángelo newspaper as its editor/reporter/photographer.

While at ASU were you involved in any organizations or teams and if so, what was your role in these?
I was a member of the National Alpha Mu Gamma National Collegiate Foreign Language (Spanish) Honor Society and served as its treasurer.  

In what ways did ASU help you to achieve your goals after graduation? 
ASU’s academic requirements and its professors helped me to become a well-rounded student.
What skills did you take away from ASU?
I am able to use my skills as far as communicating effectively; while attending college, my vocabulary expanded and from a journalistic sense what I learned from my professors and classes gave me a foundation to succeed in writing. 

Were there any faculty or staff that made a difference for you during your time at ASU? 
There were two professors who challenged me. One was an English professor in my freshman year, spring of 2002 who had a high standard of excellence. While I didn’t make a B in his class, which was disappointing, I still none-the-less learned a lot from him.
And, the other professor was Dr. Kathy Johnson. During the first several weeks I went to ask her for help on my first class assignment. She was so patient and understanding as she looked at my rough draft paper to see how to make it better. Dr. Johnson also said to go to the writing center and get help from the tutors which helped me to eventually make a B in her class.

 What is one of your fondest memories of ASU?
One proud achievement that was personally fulfilling was when I became the recipient of the Ed B. Cole Scholarship awarded by the Angelo State University Communication, Drama and Journalism Department and endowed by the San Angelo Advertising Federation (2005-2006).
Another one was when I set my mind in the spring semester of 2003 to make the dean’s list and did accomplish my goal.
And the third one was when a tutor in the Math lab that I was going to for assistance in remedial Math encouraged me to, even if I was struggling and failing the course, not give up. He suggested to take the courses in the summer, as what I had learned during that spring semester would kick-in then. It did and I was able to pass both remedial courses.

 Can you please provide a quote about your experience at ASU/what ASU means to you?
In my junior year when I was in a professor’s science class, she made a statement that profoundly stayed with me through my senior year: “Remember you are not here to get a degree, you are here to get an education. When you graduate, you will then have earned your degree.”
To this day, I still apply myself in learning something new in my field of journalism. I cover a wide range of news events, from sports to city and county government, etc. While I am not an expert at city and county news, I do apply myself in making a diligent effort to study up on the issues at hand so when I write my story, I have a somewhat grasp of the information.
Along the way I discovered something about myself two-fold. First if you set the bar high, shooting for perfection, while I may not hit it, the next target I will end up hitting will be a standard of excellence. Second, to those who aspire to achieve greatness, it doesn’t happen overnight, but if you plan for it, it will happen.
The success I achieved as a nontraditional student from day one (August 2001 to December 2006) was because I never let up on my courses. I attacked them like they were my opponents; I was not going to settle for less.
Making the dean’s list, receiving a scholarship and being a member of Alpha Mu Gamma weren’t just personal goals I set out to accomplish, but just as important was representing my parents who never received a formal education. It was because of them that I was able to graduate and become successful to some degree now in my career.
Another amazing thing occurred to me as an afterthought when I was graduating. I went in as a 47-year-old nontrade student, not sure of myself and unsure of what my future and destiny was.
After graduating at the age of 52, it dawned on me that I was not the same person who five years earlier came to ASU. I had evolved, matured, was challenged and changed in so many ways that I became a student, a better person and a contributor to my community.
When I write a story or take a photo, it’s not about me, but telling someone else’s story with words and a picture. When I cover a news event and report it, I am representing not only my employer, Conexión San Ángelo, but I am representing my family, and my alma mater, ASU, of which I am so proud to be a part of.
In conclusion, after seeing all the previous graduates who went on to have distinguished careers or left their mark in some way that brings attention to ASU, I realize that all of us stand alongside each other as equal alumni. It is a great feeling to know that I rub shoulders with the best of ASU’s graduates.
I am honored to be a graduate and alumni of ASU. Go RAMS!