Guillermo Cruz

Guillermo loves technology, and will soon be working toward his graduate degree


By Troy Wilde

August 25, 2016

Phoenix, AZ – Guillermo Cruz likes computers a lot, so much so that he’s well on his way to earning a graduate degree in computer science.

Guillermo, age 22, was born and raised in Yuma where he graduated from Cibola High School. He has nearly completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Systems Engineering at Arizona State University, and plans to immediately pursue his master’s degree.

Unlike some techies, Guillermo’s love of technology didn’t begin in childhood, “It’s something that developed in college. I had a friend who introduced me to programming during my freshman year, and it came easy to me, so I decided to switch my major and continue in computer science.”

Guillermo points out that his parents had a big influence on his path to college:

“From an early age they always stressed the importance of school and they were always very supportive of me from the start. Whenever my grades would start to drop they would push me to do better. So, my parents played a major role in me attending college, and were probably the best guides I could have.”

Guillermo is among the many hard-working students who have earned a scholarship from College Success Arizona. It provides up to six-thousand dollars per year for educational expenses, and students also received specialized mentoring services through “Success Advisers.”

Guillermo says his Success Adviser, Barbra Scrivner, has been a big help, “She’s pretty much there as a mentor and a guide for me. Whenever I’m unsure of something, or have questions, or maybe I’m freaking out about my exam finals, or just trying to balance life and school – she’s always been there, and she helps me to figure out a plan to tackle whatever challenge I’m facing.”

Guillermo adds that the financial aspect of the scholarship has helped to reduce the stress of attending college, “It has helped out so much, because college is getting more expensive, the scholarship covered a lot of my expenses and made going to college relatively easy. I didn’t have to worry about money that much, I could just worry about my grades and just my performance overall in learning, which is really nice.”

Attending college can come with many challenges, for Guillermo time management was a big challenge, “When I first started college, I didn’t know how to manage my time well because I would end up with multiple things to do – many different projects for different classes that required a lot of time. Thankfully, I feel like I have it figured out now.”

Guillermo has some advice for middle and high school students considering college, “I really, really recommend working on getting good grades, because ultimately good grades are going to help you get into college. I also think that getting good grades shows your work ethic, and how much work you’re willing to put into something. I would also encourage students to find something that they enjoy, because you could end up doing something you enjoy so much, that it doesn’t feel like a job.”

Listen to the audio PodCast of Guillermo’s entire interview

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