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Manny Avila

Manny Avila

Father, First-generation Badger
UW-Madison Online student, class of 2024

A single dad with a demanding job, Manny found time and energy to complete his degree and set an example for his son.

What led to your decision to return to school and finish your bachelor’s degree?

I was at a point in my life where my career expected more from me. When the pandemic happened, I decided it was time to finish what I started. My son was 9 at the time, and I could see how he mimicked everything I did, which led me to set an example that school is important. My son is now 13, and I cannot wait to finish my degree so that he can follow in my footsteps one day.

Tell us about your favorite parts of your program.

I’ve been able to apply many items from class into the real world. The support from my professors has motivated me to continue. Also, in this online environment, it can be difficult to connect with individuals and yet a small group of us has found support in each other. Three of us are targeting to graduate together, and I cannot wait to share that moment with them.

What advice would you give others who are considering an online bachelor’s degree program?

If you’re thinking about finishing your degree, think about all the benefits that come with completing this task. Get well informed, ask questions, reach out to alumni and current students, learn your current schedule and prepare to either fill in gaps or replace certain activities with study time. Picture yourself succeeding, and you will reach that goal.