First-gen Tarleton grad to share her journey at commencement

From TSU Newsroom
Alexis Soriano

STEPHENVILLE — Alexis Soriano takes seriously the responsibility of being a first-generation college student.

“There’s definitely pressure,” said the featured commencement speaker at Saturday’s graduation ceremonies, set for 10 a.m. at Memorial Stadium.

That’s what she’ll talk about in her speech.

“I’m the first one to do it, so that means I have a responsibility to do well for my younger sibling. That’s my motivation. She can see that if I did it, she can do it, too.”

Alexis will be awarded her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and will leave behind a legacy of academic success.

Studying at Tarleton’s Fort Worth campus, she transferred from Tarrant County College with associate’s degrees in general studies and criminal justice, earning several scholarships, including the President’s Circle, Texan Spirit and Dick Smith scholarships, as well as the Texas Ranger Law Enforcement Scholarship.

The Saginaw High School graduate was accepted at UT Arlington, but finances steered her to TCC.

“Once I was there, I started looking at transfer universities, and Tarleton seemed like the best fit.

They were able to take all my credits, and they’re known for their criminal justice program.

It was a great choice. The faculty there are really loving and understanding.”

Alexis’ time at Tarleton lived up to her expectations as she prepared for a career in law enforcement.

“It was a great experience because of the type of professors we have who have served, not only as educators but as motivators,” she said. “They guided me into their life experiences. They built a greater passion in me.”

She hopes to turn her diploma into a career working narcotics, special tactics or in a gang unit.

“I’ve already lined up several agencies I’d love to work for. I’m doing my internship with the Arlington Police Department, and I’m on good terms with them.”

With her bachelor’s secured, Alexis is continuing her higher education. She has applied for grad school and has her curriculum planned with an eye toward completing her master’s within a year.