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Cy's Spotlight

Cy's Spotlight

Stephen Posada

Stephen PosadaAugust 2020: While it may look like his time at LSC-CyFair was just a stepping stone, Stephen Posada said it was the foundation of his academic journey and chosen career.

"LSC-CyFair had prepared me not only for my university level classes, but also to be in the classroom for my career. I felt like I was not only a step ahead, but several steps ahead when I started my career as a teacher."

When he graduated Cypress Woods High School in 2009, Stephen had already earned LSC-CyFair credit through the Dual Credit program. Due to unforeseen circumstances, he would return to LSC-CyFair and earn his Associate of Arts in Teaching in 2017 and bachelor's degree in 2018 as part of a 2-1 Texas Tech Teach Program.

He said LSC-CyFair's support system and collaboration with other students were phenomenal and professors, some of whom he remains in contact, were always available. He enjoyed opportunities for hands-on experience in the education field such as participation in student organization events, tutoring programs and the AAT program's field work.

With a goal of holding future administrative or higher education professor positions, Stephen currently loves being a sixth-grade science teacher in Aldine ISD, especially when his students realize they've gotten a concept and that they know he's there to completely support them.

"I wanted to help impact the youth of today for a better tomorrow, particularly in Title 1 schools because I grew up in similar environments. The relationships that I build with my students make everything worth it."

Previous Spotlights

Melissa Reinsch

Melissa ReinschJuly 2020: A 2017 LSC-CyFair alumni, Melissa Reinsch, will begin her teaching career in the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District where she was a Cy-Fair High School graduate.

“I am thrilled I’m going to be a first-year teacher in CFISD this fall at a Title I campus. I am looking forward to creating a student-centered learning environment where the whole child can thrive.”

Melissa said her LSC-CyFair experience was filled with endless opportunities. In addition to earning an Honors College Chancellor's Fellows associate degree, she was part of the Honors College Student Organization, Future Professional Educators and National Model United Nations.

“Some of the best experiences include diving into mindfulness meditation for Honors research projects, building a home alongside my best friend in Nicaragua, traveling all over Italy with the Honors College, and connecting with faculty (in particular Professors Esther Robinson, Carolina Ruiz and Britney Jeffrey) who genuinely cared about me and my success.”

In addition, she was awarded the Irene S. Wischer Education Foundation Scholarship which allowed her to pursue elementary education at the University of Texas College of Education.

“I knew that I wanted to be an elementary school teacher because of my experiences in CFISD’s ‘Ready, Set, Teach!’ program. I loved being in the classroom, connecting with and helping young students.”

In December 2019, she graduated debt-free with her Bachelor of Science in Applied Learning and Development.

“None of what has been achieved would have been possible without the many faculty members that make LSC-CyFair extraordinary.”

Baylee Kilgore

Baylee Kilgore - June 2020June 2020: With plans to pursue music professionally and not ready to financially commit to a university, Baylee Kilgore chose to earn her associate degree first at LSC-CyFair.

“Initially, I thought I would study music education. Little did I know, that I would fall head over heels in love with the fascinating art form that is opera. I want to contribute in allowing people to experience emotion that they maybe cannot express in daily life. A career goal of mine is for opera to make a radical come back within younger generations.”

While at LSC-CyFair she performed with the choir program, in many vocal masterclasses, student recitals and even a Bosque Gallery reception, all of which prepared her to transfer in 2018 to the University of North Texas College of Music.

With encouragement and guidance of LSC-CyFair professors and mentors, particularly voice teacher Dr. Zachary Bruton, she was able to decide her career path before taking big life steps. She also gained confidence to audition for music programs and conservatories, such as The Manhattan School of Music in New York, The New England Conservatory in Boston, Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.

“I learned vocal technique that immediately allowed me to receive opera roles. I am currently performing with doctoral and graduate students, studying with Dr. Stephen Morscheck, one of the best UNT faculty voice teachers, and singing in prestigious choirs under the baton of excellent musicians.”

Operatic roles she held at UNT are The Forester’s Wife in The Cunning Little Vixen and Beatrice in Le Testament de la Tante Caroline. She also covered the roles of Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni and Regina in Regina.

Before finishing at UNT in December 2020 and enrolling in a graduate program, she will participate in the prestigious summer program run by one of opera’s biggest stars, the Dolora Zajick’s Institute for Young Dramatic Voices.

Yiheng Wang

Dr. Yiheng WangMay 2020: While engineering has always been Dr. Yiheng Wang’s field of interest, her passion for teaching was discovered in graduate school. Since joining LSC-CyFair in 2014, she and her students have reached some impressive goals.

Dr. Wang takes pride in advising LSC-CyFair’s talented, dedicated student engineering teams and witnessing their achievements in the Texas Space Consortium Grant and NASA Micro-g NeXT Design Challenges the past 5 years. Not only have the teams won 1st place in the TSCG challenges 5 times, one team’s tool design was developed for the International Space Station and used during a November 2019 spacewalk.

The design challenges are examples of how she incorporates real-world projects and skills into their engineering classes. Her goal is that students benefit from a high-quality engineering education, develop a deeper understanding of the engineering disciplines, and learn skills in critical thinking, research, communication, and project management, in additional to technical skills.

In December 2018, Dr. Wang became a U.S. citizen to expand on what she can do as an educator. Now she is better able to provide guidance and advice to international students interested in her field as well as actively participate in more government-related opportunities with her students.

“Teaching is my way of being creative and I feel fulfilled working with students. I went into teaching at community college right after I graduated in 2009 and have never regretted it."

Maryem Sheded

Maryem Sheded - April 2020April 2020: When she began her academic journey at Lone Star College-CyFair in 2016 , Mareym Sheded had no idea what the future held for her and how many people would encourage and help her along the way.

“Lone Star definitely prepared me for success. Here, the faculty are present, mind and body. They pay attention to you.”

On day two of classes, her father suffered a stroke and she thought she would have to drop out of school. However, she said her EDUC professor Pushpa Rathi worked with her to continue class as well as shared all the resources the college offers to assist students in times of need.

By the second semester, she was discovering her career goal and similar passion for the criminal justice field as another professor, Jennifer Bourgeois, who became her mentor.

In addition, Maryem was soon helping her classmates serving as an ambassador for the Student Success Institute and eventually working in the Student Services department.

After two years at LSC-CyFair, she graduated with her associate degree, the first in family to do so in the United States, and this May she will have earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University.

Paolo Jaime

Paolo Jaime - March 2020March 2020: As a Cypress Springs High School graduate, Lone Star College-CyFair was a viable, affordable option for Paolo Jaime to begin pursuing his dream of becoming a neurologist, specifically neurotrauma intensivist, known for specialized care of patients.

With his pre-requisites done in 2016, he went on to earn his Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the UTHealth Cizik School of Nursing.

“Currently, I am an ICU nurse who is part of the stroke and chest pain committees at HCA Tomball. My favorite part about this job is the way that I can directly impact my patients and their families while working alongside doctors and learning about many different pathological processes.”

While at LSC-CyFair, he spent many hours in the Academic Success Center, studying for anatomy, microbiology, and all pre-nursing courses. He also learned he had a passion for teaching. So much so, that he became a tutor for five years – through pre-reqs, nursing classes and sometimes following an overnight clinical shift at work to ensure continuity in the tutoring he provided.

“LSC gave me the tools I needed to be a successful nursing student and helped me discover a part of myself I never knew existed - a person who loved teaching. In fact, when I finally become the doctor I want to be, I aim to come back and teach as an anatomy professor.” 

Thomas Austin

Thomas Austin - February 2020February 2020: After a 45-year career in the corporate world, Thomas Austin picked up his first paint brush in a Lone Star College-CyFair art class in 2015.  “I built a home for retirement here in Cypress and in searching for art to populate our walls, I felt inspired to try my hand at it.”

When he started, the goal was simply to paint for his wife, Patti, a very successful interior designer, who has high standards and served as his muse. Three years later, with skills learned in class and encouragement from his professor, the late Laura Fisher, Thomas showcased a collection of his abstract paintings in LSC-CyFair’s Bosque Gallery.

“I think of what she taught me almost every day and I'm so grateful for the opportunity that I had at LSC-CyFair.” Why? That campus show kicked off his painting career. Not only does his work hang in his home, he’s done other shows, entered contests and sold his selling creations, which he said is “a tremendously validating experience.”

He encourages art students to join an art league because other artists will often be supportive, provide pointers and help out with techniques. He also advises students to “Practice every day, as much, as often, and as boldly as you can. Your soul will come out, to be sure.”

Sharon Haley

Sharon HaleyJanuary 2020: A 2006 graduate of LSC-CyFair's second Medical Radiological Technology program class, Sharon Haley said radiology has always interested her and it suits her personality.

"I am fascinated with the human body and the challenge of performing radiology exams that are not always 'textbook.'"

While at LSC-CyFair, the MRT faculty challenged and encourage her class to roll up their sleeves, step in and take advantage of the skills and experience of clinical technologists and radiologists to learn patient care and positioning skills. They were very supportive and gave students all the tools necessary to launch their career.

"It was definitely worth the daily 75 miles roundtrip commute!"

Two years after earning her Associate of Applied Science degree at LSC-CyFair, she was promoted to Houston Methodist Willowbrook's first X-ray Department's Lead Technologist and shortly thereafter to coordinator role for the entire Radiology Department. A decade later she is their Diagnostic Imaging Services Coordinator/Transportation Coordinator.

"I have grown to also embrace the administration side of healthcare as a coordinator. I still work closely with both patients and the other lead staff," she said. "I assist in the department's daily flow as well as develop plans for growth and reach higher levels we always strive for with our patient care skills and customer service."

This past June, Sharon married Scott, who is a Multi-Modality Rad Tech for the Houston Methodist Spring Emergency Care Center and is a 2010 graduate of LSC-CyFair's MRT program.

Melinda Kaneaster

Melinda KaneasterDecember 2019: After having a family and researching options for a new career in graphic design, Melinda Kaneaster returned to college and earned her LSC-CyFair Associate of Applied Science in Visual Communication in 2008. Thanks to her LSC relationships, her design career began with an internship at Baker Hughes, followed with a position at Integrity Graphics.

Melinda’s decade of experience includes positions such as director of graphic design at Oilfield Nameplates as well as designer for Ladybug Natural Gardener, a national brand for garden products and Plant for All Seasons, a local retail garden center. She currently works at SEI Seismic Exchange, a small company where she wears many hats.

The depth of her design skills is still highly utilized on various special projects (marketing publication ads, invitations, reports, interoffice communications and presentations) that allow her to explore all the facets of being a designer.

"We see the world through a different lens. Our knowledge and understanding of proper layout, how the eye and mind work together to translate and interpret information, psychology of color, type contrasts, and how elements work together (or not) makes us highly unique and valuable in any organization."

This fall, Melinda returned to LSC as an adjunct instructor at LSC-Westway Park Technology Center. "The instructors at LSC were truly invested in my academic success. I want to be that inspiration to others searching for a career in this field."

Jimmy Nguyen

Jimmy NguyenNovember 2019: Back in 2004 when LSC-CyFair was known as Cy-Fair College, Jimmy Nguyen learned to play tennis as a Fighting Duck under then Coach Tim Sebesta. In 2018, with encouragement from his former coach, Jimmy returned to lead the now Falcons team.

"Getting a chance to coach the team I used to play for is amazing," said Jimmy, a University of Houston financial analyst. "The tennis program's success is all dependent on the students. My goals for them are to have fun, make lifelong friends as I have and improve their tennis skills. But outside of tennis, it's for them to graduate and succeed as they move on to the next chapter of their lives." 

By his second year as a Fighting Duck, Jimmy was team captain. He fondly recalls participating in the United States Tennis Association (USTA) state championship tournament, going to nationals twice and becoming certified as a Special Olympics coach. Even after he transferred to University of Houston-Downtown, where he earned a Bachelor's in Accounting, Jimmy continued taking classes at LSC-CyFair and earned an EMT-Basic certification in 2008. A decade later, he has helped the Falcons rise again.

"Jimmy rejuvenated the Tennis Club, which now averages 20+ members. In his first year, the team won the Lone Star Sport Club Conference Fall 2018 championship (runner-up in Spring 2019.) They advanced to nationals after being recognized as USTA's Tennis On Campus Texas Team of the Year (due in large part to the team's 395 community service hours) and their team captain Ena Cusi being named Texas Leader of the Year," said Tiffany Lane, Manager of Recreational Sports. "I attribute all of this to Jimmy's passion for tennis and specifically this program."

Alyssa Thompson

Alyssa ThompsonOctober 2019: Alyssa Thompson is currently making a difference as Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, having earned her Associate of Applied Science degree in Echocardiography in December 2018.

Becoming a doctor was Alyssa’s career goal until she was diagnosed with a heart condition. After taking medical leave from college twice due to related sickness, Alyssa, who underwent echo scans, became interested in helping other heart patients.

She’s heard from several doctors at area facilities that LSC-CyFair has an outstanding reputation for equipping students with the knowledge and skills needed for such allied health careers.

In LSC-CyFair’s Echocardiography Program, she learned everything from the physics of the machine and how to use it to the total anatomy of the heart as well as all of the different pathologies and how other illnesses affect the heart.

“LSC-CyFair’s program was extremely strict and by far the most difficult thing I have been through,” she said. “In the long run, it was totally worth it. Once I graduated, I felt beyond prepared to start my job.”

Cathy Goldsmith

Cathy GoldsmithSeptember 2019: Cathy Goldsmith’s Lone Star College-CyFair experience has come full circle from a 2007 Medical Radiologic Technology program graduate to an adjunct lab coordinator since January 2017.

With an interest in health care and helping people, Cathy’s research showed Radiologic Technologists was a growing field and a good career choice for her as was LSC-CyFair’s MRT program in which she made many friends and career acquaintances.

Cathy’s health career began as an Interventional Rad Tech for a division of DaVita Medical Group, included a couple years for the University of Texas Medical group in The Woodlands and more than 10 years now at HCA North Cypress Medical Center.

“LSC-CyFair had a huge impact on my success as almost everywhere I have worked, I have run into someone I met through my school process.  It gave me a base pool of people in the industry to draw on for questions and support throughout my career so far.”

Her learning continues as part of LSC-CyFair’s MRT program team. Being lab coordinator is an exciting next phase of her career as she works with, and for, some terrific educators.

“It is very rewarding helping students learn, grow and meet their own personal goals as I help prepare the future generations of caregivers in my own small way.”

Elizabeth "Beth" Orea

Elizabeth "Beth" OreaAugust 2019: Elizabeth "Beth" Orea started LSC-CyFair in 2007 with no intent of obtaining a degree, but rather taking core classes and transferring to a four-year university. She said LSC-CyFair prepared her for such a transfer and was a positive transition that allowed her time to figure out the next steps to take in terms of education and career goals.

In addition to classes, she served in the inaugural Student Ambassadors program and was a work study student in the College Relations department. Her history professor and a mentor inspired Beth to study history at St. Edward's University in Austin with a goal to become a history professor. However, Beth's path took a different direction.

She has spent 10 years in the recruitment industry and is thankful for the road traveled to get where she is now. Beth just celebrated her fifth anniversary at Houston's Murray Resources, a highly successful recruiting firm where she is a Senior Search Director.

"I truly believe that without the lessons, mentorship and encouragement I had received at LSC-CyFair, I would not be where I am today."

Alexandria Martin

Alexandria MartinJuly 2019: Eight years ago, Alexandria Martin sat in an organic chemistry summer class at LSC-CyFair as a student and this summer she stands in front of the class as an adjunct instructor.  When she was attending Nicholls State University in Louisiana, the summer classes she took at LSC-CyFair in 2011 and 2012 allowed her to graduate college in three years and go on to be successful in graduate school.

Plans to become a doctor began changing thanks to her “amazing and accommodating” LSC-CyFair organic chemistry professor Dr. Houston Brown, whose class led her to later earn a master’s in chemistry at Prairie View A&M University. Then while working as a teaching assistant in graduate school, Alexandria discovered how much she loved teaching and enrolled in an alternative certification program for teaching. She said the rest is history.

Her new teaching career began in 2016 at Cy-Creek High School, where she partners with LSC-CyFair as a Dual Credit instructor. Having enjoyed her teaching experience in graduate school, she wanted to work with college students again. Now, with her own classroom of learners at LSC-CyFair, Alexandria will continue to be a student herself as she plans to pursue a Ph.D. in organic chemistry

Ganesh Sundaresan

Ganesh SundaresanJune 2019: Ganesh Sundaresan, who is pursuing his Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance at Texas A&M, recently accepted a summer venture capital internship with JUMP Investors in Los Angeles. Wanting to gain a deep knowledge of accounting, the language of business, he chose to focus on finance because it stretches him analytically and is always changing.

However it was his time at LSC-CyFair that allowed him to start at Texas A&M running. He started at LSC-CyFair taking Dual Credit courses as a high school sophomore. Later on through his accounting coursework here, Ganesh built a solid foundation to tackle future courses when he transferred. 

It was in his summer accounting course with Professor Shawn Miller that he learned to use QuickBooks, the number one accounting software for small businesses. He was encouraged to explore financial statements on company websites like Walmart to apply newly learned information.

Ganesh said this class opened his mind to consider a path of perhaps owning my own business one day. Having this goal made him want to do better in class and continue taking advantage of opportunities that came his way to build on the foundation laid at LSC-CyFair. The venture capital internship will show him what it takes to run a startup company.

Samantha Lopez

Samantha LopezMay 2019: With a love for writing and communicating with people, Samantha Lopez paired speech communication with journalism to earn her Associate of Arts in Speech Communication in May 2017 at LSC-CyFair and transfer to the University of Houston to study broadcast journalism. 

During her time at LSC-CyFair, she realized that she not only wanted to use words on paper to communicate, but to use her voice. Choosing to be interactive with that new-found passion, she displayed her poetry through voice in a poetry slam and participated in a PechaKucha speech competition. Holding on to her roots, she joined the Creative Writing Club and the campus literary journal, The Barker's Voice. 

With the encouragement of professors, Samantha learned a lot about herself. If she wanted be a writer or a speaker, she had to actually do something about it. That meant write when she didn’t feel like it or find the closest bathroom stall to “power-pose” herself into feeling confident before public speaking.

Samantha is currently an intern for the Houston Chronicle where she writes for, edits videos for their multi-platform, and had a story go onto the premium website under "Gray Matters." Open to exploring other types of journalism, she would also like to intern at a radio or news station before graduating with her bachelor’s degree in Fall 2019.

Rey Laurencio

Rey LaurencioApril 2019: Rey Laurencio grew up as a native Spanish speaker, struggling to adopt the English language, when his family won a visa lottery and emigrated to the United States from Cuba. In high school, he was more focused on sports than academics. However, he became an Honors College student at LSC-CyFair and held officer positions in the Business Savvy Club, Student Government Association and Phi Theta Kappa. Rey graduated in 2016 with an associate of arts in business with highest honors in research and a prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Scholarship recipient (the second in LSC-CyFair history.)

Rey went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Texas at Austin in May 2018. In addition, he received a Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Scholarship and is currently attending the Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Texas Southern University with plans to become an immigration lawyer. Rey’s advice is to “Never limit yourself, surround yourself with the right people who genuinely care, put in the work and always believe!”

Samantha Ceballos

Samantha CeballosMarch 2019: With a passion for literature and writing, Samantha Ceballos plans to become a professor to help others see the power of literature and not fear reading and writing. She was an honors student graduate first at LSC-CyFair in 2016 and then at UTSA where she earned her BA in English with concentrations in Creative Writing and Professional Writing.

While at LSC-CyFair, she won third-place in two Poetry Slams, conquered stage fright through Pecha Kucha contest and Honors College conferences and learned to have pride in her work. She was one of the student editors for LSC-CyFair’s annual literary publication "The Barker's Voice: A Journal of Arts and Letters" and later the main editor for UTSA's "Paisano Plus."

She also had the opportunity to interview author Sandra Cisneros as a sophomore in college, which she said was background information that helped push her undergraduate thesis to a new level.

Samantha, who would also like to continue to be an editor for a journal or magazine, is now pursuing her MA and MFA at Our Lady of the Lake.

Elizabeth Hale

Elizabeth HaleFebruary 2019: Elizabeth Hale, who is a mother, wife, singer, actor, and small business co-owner, said it's a little surreal having come full circle from being a Lone Star College-CyFair student in 2008 to returning 10 years later as a vendor creating a customized cake for the January opening of LSC-Westway Park Technology Center. 
She first shared her vocal and acting talent on stage in operas such as "The Mikado" (Katisha) and "The Marriage of Fiagro" (Marcellina) and productions including  The Wizard of Oz (Cowardly Lion) and Beauty and the Beast (the Wardrobe). Now as co-owner of "Cake. Fine Pastry" with her husband, Jerry, she's impressing the college and Cy-Fair communities with her creative culinary talent. In addition, they had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to compete on the Food Network's "Winner Cake All" which will air March 11.   
Attending LSC-CyFair may become a family affair as she hopes to return to continue her own music education and have her two children, now at Langham Creek, start their college career here. She says the faculty and staff were great and the music and arts program went beyond her expectations.

Matthew Lawson

Matthew LawsonJanuary 2019: Currently a full-time father to one son and resident of Indiana, Matthew Lawson plans to be a federal defender in Indiana and one day to run for public office.

When he began at LSC-CyFair in 2009, he wasn't really "college ready" nor did he have any professional skills, some of which he learned working in the Financial Aid office.  However, he said small classroom sizes allowed professors - who were helpful, encouraging and accessible - to get to know and understand their students.

It was during Professor Heidi Jo Green's Introduction to Political Science that he developed a love for the American political system and made the decision to pursue a law career.

This 2011 LSC-CyFair grad transferred to Indiana University earning a bachelor's in Political Science and minoring in pre-law in 2015. And this past May, he graduated from (Robert H.) McKinney School of Law at Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis and in July passed his Bar Exam.

"LSC-CyFair put me in a position to attain my current successes and it will always hold a special place in my life!"

Shiven Patel

Shiven PatelDecember, 2018: Former Lone Star College-CyFair student Shiven Patel is on track to become a lawyer working in areas of disability advocacy.

“All throughout my education I was pushed to my limits, especially as a student with a disability,” said Shiven, who is legally blind and currently a full-time student at South Texas College of Law Houston.  “I have faced a fair amount of discrimination both in my personal and professional life. I understand the daily struggles of others dealing with discrimination and that is what made me want to advocate for my community.”

At LSC-CyFair, he appreciated the small classes and professors who took time to get to know their students and be available outside of class. He also received assistance from the Disability Services staff who provided accommodations and technology he needed to succeed in the classroom. And, he learned the importance of a hard work ethic, which led to making the President’s List and maintaining a 4.0 his last two semesters. 

With plans to graduate law school in December 2019, Shiven is looking forward to a rewarding career advocating for those with disabilities.

Dr. Brian Herrington

Dr. Brian HerringtonNovember, 2018: Dr. Brian Herrington, Assistant Professor of Music and Symphony Orchestra Director, was named an American Prize finalist for composers of works for band/wind ensemble in professional and student division, for “Verses from the Thicket.” Conductor and composer Peter Stanley Martin describes Brian’s work as a “powerful antiphonal work for winds.” 

Brian says music transcends language, making it an almost magical art form.  He grew up in a small rural town without much access to the arts, so he feels a great debt of gratitude to his music teachers who provided a lifeline for his self-expression. He taught as an adjunct at LSC-CyFair since 2006 and became full-time in 2018. Many former students who have become teachers gives him great satisfaction.

Music is also a highly collaborative art with his works created with specific musicians or works of poets in mind. His recent award-winning piece was written for a student ensemble and he’s delighted that the shared project has garnered national attention.

Violet Dang

Cy's Spotlight on Violet Dang: October 2018October, 2018: As an international student at LSC-CyFair, Violet Dang got involved in organizing college and community events. Her confidence grew as she improved her communication skills in English, her second language, and developed leadership skills.

“I credit my time with the Student Ambassadors to be one of the most impactful experience that really made me who I am today.”

This 2011 grad went on to earn her BBA at Texas Christian University and just graduated in May with an MA from Columbia University. Now as a Data Scientist in the Healthcare Analytics practice at McKinsey and Company in New York, she applies advanced analytics to solve complex business problems in healthcare while helping leaders in the industry make the best use of their data.

“The work I’m doing is meaningful because I’m playing a role in shaping up the transformation of the healthcare industry using analytics.”

Bryan Ramirez

Bryan RamirezMay, 2018: Bryan Ramirez, who recently graduated from the Transportation Security Administration Academy in Brunswick, Georgia, now works in Homeland Security as a Transportation Security Officer. When he graduates from Sam Houston State University, he plans on becoming a United States customs officer and ultimately a Federal Air Marshal.

His interest in the Criminal Justice Field began as a teenager in the Harris County Sheriff’s Explorer Program and was strengthened at LSC-CyFair, where he was a Criminal Justice student and CJ Club member graduating with an associate’s degree in 2016.

“I owe my success to Professor Jennifer Bourgeois, who pushed me and my classmates to be our best. She gave us the chance to meet many professionals who are a part of the criminal justice system in both local and federal agencies. I came across the job I currently have, thanks to the networking skills she taught and had us practice in and out of the classroom.”

Joly Zuniga

Joly Denis Giraldo ZunigaApril, 2018: Joly Denis Giraldo Zuniga is now in her seventh year as a bilingual kindergarten teacher at Alief ISD Youens Elementary School and a special education teacher in the summer at Alief ISD.

She began at LSC-CyFair 10 years ago in LSC-CyFair’s English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program followed with the Alternative Teacher Certification Program (ATCP.) Joly, who is from Colombia and is still friends with some of her ESOL classmates, recommends the ESOL and ATCP programs because she said her teachers were so supportive.

“Little children are like sponges absorbing everything. Then when they are reading or know their numbers, it’s satisfying to know you helped them.”

While at LSC-CyFair as a full-time student, she also served as a Spanish tutor and volunteered in the children’s library helping with Spanish Storytime.

Joly is a single mom of a 3-year-old daughter and a foster mom to siblings ages 3 and 4. This December, she will graduate with a master’s in Special Education and hopes to become an Educational  Diagnostician.

Aesha Aleem-Lee

Aesha Aleem-LeeMarch, 2018: LSC-CyFair adjunct art instructor and Houston artist Aesha Aleem-Lee was recently featured in a Houston Chronicle article recognizing her talent in "The Beauty of the Black Woman" exhibition, which explores the diversity found in the African-American woman. Her exhibition was on display at the Art League of Houston (Dec. 1- Jan. 20) and the Houston Museum of African American Culture (during Black History Month.) The exhibition of Aesha’s portraits pay homage to the diversity, strength and beauty of black women and address a gap in how are portrayed in popular culture.

“The idea behind the series is to address some of the many concerns that plague the black woman, and to challenge those notions with playful titles and beautiful images.”

With a bachelor’s in studio painting from the University of Houston and master’s from the University of St. Thomas with a concentration in Art History, Aesha has taught at LSC-CyFair for three years. This instructor, whose love of art made teaching a natural choice, said she hopes her students “not only learn different ways to view art, but obtain a comprehensive understanding and appreciation for the art that they view in the future.”

Kaylin Sheppard

Kaylin SheppardFebruary, 2018: CONGRATULATIONS to LSC-CyFair Phi Theta Kappa and kinesiology student Kaylin Sheppard, who is one of 10 students nationwide selected to receive the 2017 Pearson Scholarship for Higher Education, a $5,000 award!

This prestigious scholarship is awarded to Phi Theta Kappa members who are civically engaged in their community through service and who demonstrate leadership, academic rigor, and excellence. Preference is given to first-generation college students. Kaylin was recently accepted to attend the University of Texas at Tyler in the fall and plans to become a physical therapist.

“I understand the importance and honor of receiving this scholarship and enjoy the mentorship that comes with it. This scholarship encourages me to be a better student, showing PTK and donors that I am a good steward of the good things that come to me. Choosing a career in the medical field is only one way I can give back to my community in the future. I hope to someday give of my resources to a scholarship organization to help benefit another student.”

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