Students

What are Students saying about CSS?

Hi! I was at the Fresno State College Day and I just wanted to let you know you inspired me!!! Your life experience is similar to mine.Thank you for letting me open up my eyes and helping me not limit myself to just go to a junior college. You made a HUGE impact in my life. I learned that anything is possible even if you’re not financially adaptable.

  • Senior, Tulare Union High School (Tulare, CA)





I really like your speech Dr. Rios it is very interesting. I feel like you told my story. I am a gang member but after hearing you speak it makes me want to change. I want to make my mother proud help her out. I think I can do it. I just have to work hard and stop doing the crazy things I do. You taught me that someone that was once like me can actually become someone important. I hope that you go to others high schools. That way you can help other gang members.

  • Salvador Meza, High School Freshman (Houston, TX)





Hello Mr. Carias, I am a high school senior at Arvin High School near Bakersfield your trip out to my school motivated and inspired me to apply to college. You told us your story and why you wanted to go to college because you didn’t want to see your mom suffer any more while she scrubbed and cleaned houses of rich and privileged people’s houses. I related to you because I use to live in Los Angeles with a single mom and she use to go to Manhattan Beach and clean houses there as well. Seeing her work hard for little money motivated me and changed me to go to college so I can provide for her, my family and myself. Your visit to Arvin brought joy to me because it was good seeing someone from Southern California and seeing someone who actually related to me. When you left I felt like saying take me with you. But soon enough I’ll be heading back to Los Angeles for college. Thank you Jaime and I’m hoping I’ll see you soon.

  • Senior, Arvin High School (Arvin, CA)





I’m a junior in high school and i went to the leadership conference where I met Dr. Rios and he really inspired me. When I got home i was so excited to tell my close teachers and my family about this awesome guy. I really wasn’t motivated in life either because i was blaming everyone for my mistakes and my errors, but when I heard Dr. Rios story I was blown away from what he had to survive with his mom and siblings. His presentation made me laugh and cry and think about my future. Ever since I heard him speak I have improved in school and now believe I can make it to college. Thank you Dr. Rios for inspiring me and my friend.

  • Paulin Garcia, High School Sophomore (Tigard, WA)





Dear Jaime, I can’t really express my feelings correctly, I believe it’s mainly because of the fact that your presentation was outstanding it left me speechless. Right after you ended your speech I texted my mom and dad and thanked them for all their sacrifices. I have thanked then before many times yet for some reason I had to tell them at that moment. You know it was actually at the right timing too because they were working at the convention center decorating for a presentation for their business and I hadn’t realized that they were there since 4:00 am till 11:30 in the evening. I know that the reason why your speech was inspirational was due to the fact that you were one of the only speakers who actually related to our lives, and to be honest I know that what you said is exactly what my success story will sound like when I go forth and tell my community of my success. I admit I sometimes get embarrassed of what their occupation might be and I become frustrated of the little time they give me, yet I want to grow up and be able to go back home from Stanford or Yale and tell them “Mom, Dad, we made it so here you can have your diploma now,” because like you said, its all of our success. I guess I said a lot, but although I can go on and on I feel that this silence should stay the same just to keep the though fresh in my mind. I once again thank you for everything.

  • Sophomore, Abraham Lincoln High School (Lincoln Heights, CA)





I am a high school student and I just wanted to say thank you to Dr. Rios for speaking today. You motivated me to continue pursuing a higher education and to believe in myself. I don’t think I’m exactly the target student in mind (all my needs are cared for, i have a great family and nothing but opportunity wherever i turn- my life is cushy and i know it) but i really appreciated the message. We really are capable of doing anything we decide is worth it. I consider myself a good student but good lord, high school can be so negative. It seems like everyone is either hyper-motivated and TOTALLY out of balance (so wound up that they’re miserable) or they’ve given up. Most kids are either worn out, frustrated or beat down—> a positive message is rare. Hearing you speak today really reminded me why I’m here and the positive rather than negative re-enforcement meant the world to me. For once it wasn’t “you should for college, blah blah blah,” it was “you should for you and for the rest of the world” and that’s worth a lot more. Thank you for being happy end excited for all of us.
Seriously, it made my day and I know there were a lot of kids who needed it more than me. I’ve lived in other countries and I’ve been the one being stereotyped and judged and it hurts. Thank you for bringing a little empathy and understanding with you. So, thanks for the challenge to the stereotypes and the motivation/encouragement. I would give you a hug if i could. You just made my month and I know it meant even more to some others.
Thank you for the inspiration.

  • Shannon Lobdell, High School Senior (Sun Valley, ID)