Iva Galvan first visited Baylor as a member of the high school college-prep program AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination). That was the point at which she started taking her education seriously.
“I remember thinking, ‘If I were to come here, I would have to be really smart,’” Galvan says. “Parents are going to push you, but it’s the child’s decision to actually put in effort.”
Galvan begin taking Advanced Placement (AP) courses at Mansfield Legacy High School and dual-credit courses through Tarrant County College. Galvan credits AVID for her attending college.
“Without it, I probably wouldn’t be at Baylor,” she says. “The first time I heard the words ‘college’ and ‘university,’ I actually didn’t know they were basically the same thing. That’s how oblivious I was to everything about college.”
Galvan learned of Baylor’s First in Line Success Academy during her senior year in high school from her AVID teacher, who helped her apply for one of the program’s limited number of spots.
“I was super happy to be accepted,” Galvan says. “It’s been nice to have a mentor, almost like another AVID teacher.”
Galvan says First in Line has greatly added to her Baylor experience, especially the ability to readily find community.
“Before arriving at Baylor, I thought of myself as an outsider,” she says. “Then, I realized there are more people from my background than I thought. And you meet other people who maybe have a harsher background than you, and you see them make it all the way here. It’s nice to get that real-life exposure. I didn’t think I would have that at Baylor.”
Galvan says she’s always been self-reliant but college has opened her eyes to another level of independence and time-management. She says her family background propels her to excel.
“When you’re surrounded by people growing up who had the opportunity but didn’t take it, or who always wanted to go to college but couldn’t, it drives you,” Galvan says. “If you have the opportunity, take it.”