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While many parents are going to be at this spring Our Lady of the Lake University’s commencement ceremony, one parent is taking it to the next level. Father and daughter Jose Rodriguez Jr. and Alma Rodriguez are set to walk the stage and receive their diplomas together.

Alma Rodriguez, a psychology major with a minor in criminal justice, graduated from high school in 2015 and has been at OLLU for all four years of her post-secondary academic career. She began her studies with her father then and has been going through the college life with him ever since. Jose Rodriguez Jr., also known by his fellow classmates as Angel, was in the military until 2015 when his daughter graduatd high school. Angel decided that since his military disability was becoming more present, a long-term life for him in the military would not be the best thing to continue with. “I wanted to chase my dream of getting my master’s and continuing on to becoming a therapist,” he said. Angel is also a psychology major with a minor in English, similar to his daughter.

Since both father and daughter are coming close to the end of their undergraduate careers, they hope to continue their studies to reach their big dreams one day. Alma, much like her father, wants to continue to get her masters. However, she says for now that she would like to join the Air Force, “Hopefully I can join the Air Force at the beginning of the year and get my masters in criminology or clinical mental health in counseling,” she said. Angel says that he officially got accepted into the master’s program at OLLU and has high hopes of getting another degree after this one and opening up his own practice one day. “I look forward to starting that program this fall and then finishing that to go onto my bigger dream,” he said.

They say the support for each other that they have is what has helped them both get through the years. 

“I loved having my dad by my side though college. It has been a fun experience and one I know I will not forget,” Alma said.

You can catch the two walking the stage together May 9 as they accept their degrees and further their goals.

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