BUIES CREEK - Campbell University recognized the family of Selene Castillo Alfaro, a freshman and pre-professional biology major from Raleigh, N.C., as its 2012 Family of the Year Saturday during the Homecoming football game. Campbell’s Office of Student Life selects the Family of the Year based on the family’s support for both the student and for the university.
Selene wrote the following essay to nominate her family for the honor:
Our Orange and Black Journey
My name is Selene Castillo Alfaro; I was born in Guerrero, Mexico, the day of March 22, 1993. My parents, Felipe Castillo and Maria Castillo Alfaro, wanted a better life for me and a better future for the family for grow in. So in 1995 my family immigrated to the United States of America in search of a better life, in search of the American Dream. Years later, my three other siblings were born; Alexia is now 17, Gisselle 12 and Felipe Castillo Alfaro 5. Currently, I am at the age of 19 and graduated from Garner Magnet High School in 2012.
I consider my family very strong because we have been through so much, staying united through sickness and happiness. Trust is the base of our family because we believe that with no trust there is no communication. My siblings and I have the perfect example with our parents being married for 21 years, having kept the family strong and motivated. My parents have always told my siblings and me:
“We will not have much to offer you once we are gone, but something we can give you and inherited to you and your siblings is education -- the opportunity to become a professional in life -- because we do not want you to be like us. That education will and is the best present you can give yourself, because you do not know how blessed you are that we would of given the world to have this opportunity.”
Those words have always been stuck in my head and in my heart. Those words are the motivation for me to go to college, to have chosen Campbell University to be part of my higher education. My family and my community is my motivation, because, as a minority, I have my siblings and community looking up to me to set an example, to make a mark in this big nation.
I am a first generation going to college and want to become a neurologist/surgeon in the future. I live in Raleigh, N.C.; and in my search for a college, I did not want to be like the rest of my friends who wanted to be as far away from their family as possible. I wanted to be no more than an hour away, because I love my family and we have always been so close; I do not know what would be of me without them. So my family and I went to look at various colleges and we encountered many things both good and bad. I could not see myself living in any of the universities I saw for four years. However, when we stepped foot on the campus of Campbell University, we were greeted with handshakes, warm big smiles, and a beautiful campus. I felt safe, and it was no more than an hour from home, making it automatically feel like home.
Now that I am in college at Campbell University, my family enthusiasm is crazy for camels, for the Orange and Black. My parents are so happy that I chose Campbell that they tell all their friends and family; two of my siblings say that they are going to Campbell when they graduate high school. My family feels like they are the only ones in the whole family -- in our whole community -- with a student in college. My parents once mentioned they are so proud of me for choosing such a great college that they feel calmer knowing that their daughter will be in great hands in a nice Christian environment where I can succeed in life; they know I am not far from reaching the American Dream if I continue my education.
My family is important to me, because I know they are working really hard to put me through college. I consider myself extremely blessed for having the family I have. I know we are not perfect, but I cherish and give thanks to the Lord for blessing me with the greatest gift in the world: a supportive and strong family. I also thank the Lord for giving me the opportunity to be a part of Campbell University and for my family to be a part of the Orange and Black.