Equipped to Lead and Succeed

Meet the Graduates

by Evan Elliot, USF News

Five new alumni celebrate their big day — and reflect on their time at USF.

Trineca Godfrey

Trineca Godfrey, MPH, School of Nursing and Health Professions

“I’m excited and proud because I can carry my family across the stage with me today. Their hard work and sacrifice helped me get my diploma. I plan to create change in community health, to address health disparities for women of color.”

Kirstynn Macias

Kirstynn Macias, BSN, School of Nursing and Health Professions

“I’m grateful to my friends and family for their support and guidance. I’ve worked eight years toward this day, starting with six years in the Air Force and two years at Yuba College before transferring here.”

Raphael Pelejo

Raphael Pelejo, BSN, School of Nursing and Health Professions

“I think of my classmates as family. In the BSN program, you have to pass a progression exam to graduate. You get three tries to pass. Everyone who passed on the first try spent hours tutoring others to pass on their second try, and then everyone who passed helped others to pass on their third try. The people who succeeded didn’t just move forward; they reached back.”

Nataly Torres

Nataly Torres, BS Business Administration, School of Management

“My professors gave me support to reach my dreams and to make my parents proud. At USF, professors don’t let you fail. If you stumble, they reach out and they help you.”

Daryl Mata

Daryl Mata, BSN, School of Nursing and Health Professions

“Today is the end of an eight-year journey. I spent four years at City College of San Francisco and earned three associate’s degrees. But I found biomedical engineering and biochemistry devoid of human interaction and touch, so I transferred to nursing at USF. I’m the first in my family to graduate from college. Next step is the NCLEX exam for a nursing license. I’m not scared of the NCLEX. USF has prepared me well.”

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