From Poverty to Promise, GateWay Student Builds a Future

Friday, January 29, 2021
Jesus Serrato

As a child growing up in poverty, Jesus Serrato knew he always needed to work hard to get ahead. Being raised by a single mother, his family faced challenges to make ends meet. It was through this experience that he placed a high value on education and the opportunities it could provide for his future. It was during a high school field trip to GateWay Community College that he started to see what that future could be.

“I really enjoyed the atmosphere and student life, the diversity of different cultures and backgrounds,” said Serrato. “Since I have interest in the medical field, seeing the healthcare building while on the campus tour reassured me that GateWay was a great choice to accomplish my career plans.”

He had made the decision to pursue becoming a registered nurse. But he soon realized that college was very different than high school and it would take some time to adjust to a new learning environment. After being exposed to new study habits, different work assignments and time management skills, he decided to join the EXCEL program at GateWay to help turn his dream into a reality.

“With EXCEL, you feel like you have a second family that you can rely on and have that extra support,” said Serrato. “Being in the EXCEL program helped me build that confidence I needed.”

Serrato hopes to join the Registered Nursing Program at GateWay next year. With his first college semester behind him, his goal of working with patients and making a difference in the lives of others is now one step closer to coming true.

When asked what advice he would give to incoming students, Serrato had this to say, “Never give up on your dreams even if you are faced with challenges out of your control. Moreover, when you are faced with challenges, you will learn to overcome them and learn to avoid them getting in the way of accomplishing your career, personal and life goals.”

Through all of his hard work, one thing is clear -- his determination is helping shape his future. 

To learn more about the EXCEL program at GateWay Community College, visit: