Spotlight on Alumni
At Triton, we seek to celebrate the success of our students and graduates! The Alumni Relations Office stays connected for life through recognition of the achievements of our alumni after leaving our gates. Each month, the success stories of our alumni will be featured in our Spotlight on Alumni series.
Triton student’s educational path leads him to Morehouse College
Mario Lamar is carving out his own slice of success. A Maywood resident and the ninth child out of 14 siblings, Lamar has found his path to success with the guidance of Triton College, and he is excited about what the future holds for him, as a full-time student at the historically black institution of Morehouse College in Atlanta.
Growing up in Maywood, Lamar was homeschooled by his mother from kindergarten to 12th grade. It was ideal for Lamar and his siblings’ situation; but when it came time for him to attend college, he was denied because his diploma was not recognized by the state. With aspirations to go to college, he decided to get his GED from Malcolm X College before enrolling at Triton to pursue his associate’s degree in general studies.
An active reservist in the U.S. Navy, Lamar completed his studies toward his associate’s degree in December 2013. Unfortunately, because he will be on active duty at the time, Lamar will not be available to walk the stage to receive his diploma on May 17, 2014, at the 48th Annual Triton College Commencement ceremony held at Rosemont Theater. He wishes his fellow classmates the best of luck.
Lamar is currently pursuing his bachelor’s in International Studies and Spanish at Morehouse, as he gains real-world experience through an internship with Experian.
What have been some obstacles you've had to overcome in pursuit of your educational and career goals?
I joined the Navy in order to be able to pay for my education, and while part of the Navy, I realized the goals I want for myself. Throughout my education, I had to put forth double the effort in order to excel in math. What helped was one great math tutor at Triton, Gricela Bueso (Gee Gee). She helped me tremendously!
What or who has served as a source of inspiration in either your career, personal life or both?
My father has served as an inspiration in both my personal and career life. His example of a well-read, well-balanced and spiritual man has had a resounding effect on me that gives me drive. Through him, I learned whatever you want in life, you must cultivate and summon the will of your person and make your dreams come true.
What would you consider your strong suit to be – whether skills or qualities?
I am gregarious. I love to engage people. I am persistent. Most of my greatest achievements have come via persistence and tireless pursuits.
How has Triton College impacted your life?
Triton College has given me wings like a morning dove. TRiO Student Support Services was instrumental in transitioning me from the community college atmosphere to the university setting. Thanks to BriAnne Nichols, Melanie Olviera-Jones and Noel Reynoso – they provided me academic counseling and personal advice. TRiO, an untold secret, helps so many people with little to no recognition. Many graduates owe thanks and praise to this organization that works in silence.
What advice would you give to someone who would like to pursue a career in your field?
Look for internships in the government and learn more than one language. Being fluent in three languages is great to have under your belt!
What are your words of wisdom for current Triton students?
Keep looking forward and seek help when needed. Don’t procrastinate. Stay ahead of the syllabus, and sit in front of the class. Think business, and then play.
What are your plans for the future?
I will be a U.S. diplomat in the State Department in the capacity of Latin Affairs.