Tanya (Manriquez) Lujan ('09)
When Tanya got home, she didn’t immediately start her 10-page paper. Instead, she cooked dinner for her kids, helped with homework, and put them to bed. At midnight, she began sorting through stacks of research and notes, drifting off to sleep at 2:00 a.m., only to have her children wake her for breakfast at 6:00 a.m.
Tanya is a wife and mother who took a big chance to attend ACU. Because her husband had a good job in Odessa as a police officer, Tanya moved to Abilene with her children so she could complete her education in speech pathology, since there was no program available in Odessa. Over time, with weekend help from her husband and with local support from professors and friends, Tanya completed her degree.
A family's response to tragedy
Before graduation, Tanya reflected on a family who helped make her ACU experience possible. When Larry and Barbara Cobb’s daughter, Audra, died in an accident while studying speech pathology at ACU, family and friends honored Audra’s memory by establishing the Audra Cobb Memorial Scholarship. This departmental scholarship, along with a transfer scholarship, was critical to funding Tanya’s education.
She had the opportunity to meet Mr. and Mrs. Cobb and recounted the emotional visit that ended with tears of both gratitude and joy.
ACU is more than an education. It’s a Christian education that I am confident will make me into a Christian professional. Yes, this will set me apart from most, but in a very good way.
After graduation, Tanya moved back to Odessa where her husband and family were anxiously waiting. She is leaving ACU but hopes to return someday—if her nine year old son doesn’t beat her to it! He has been witness to the tangible changes in his mom and looks forward to attending ACU someday.
Advice to incoming students
"If you are considering coming to ACU, don’t second guess yourself. It will change your life for the better and teach you so many things you never thought possible. If you think you can’t afford it, have faith, because it can happen to you. There are scholarships and financial aid. . . the point is you can go to school, and ACU is the best place to attend."
Supporting ACU means supporting students like Tanya, who depend on scholarships to receive an education here. That's why the Office of Advancement exists: to strengthen, renew and build the relationships that help fund the mission, Promise and 21st-Century Vision of ACU, thereby helping more students like Tanya experience the life-changing effects of the ACU experience.