Juggling a full course load, while marching around the country in the Ocean of Soul Marching Band, and serving in a leadership role in the band is not easy. But for the fall 2022 valedictorian, Jennifer Guzman, the challenge was worth it.
The Houston native attended Ross Sterling Aviation High School and has been interested in music since middle school.
“The Ocean of Soul was definitely a driving force behind why I came to Texas Southern,” Guzman said.
She made history as the Ocean’s first female tuba section leader.
“That was definitely new. But also, it was great being able to lead a group of young people who are also my peers. The experiences, the hard work, everything, I completely loved it.”
Guzman is a music education major with plans to become a band director after graduation.
“I love to teach. I just love the impact educators have on youth. I know the impact my previous band directors had on my life and I want to be able to share that knowledge and passion for music and help others experience life through music the same way I did.”
She was surprised to learn she was the fall graduating class’s valedictorian.
“I had to sit there for a second and say is this really true? How? Because all I did was go to class and handle business. I did not know that would mean I would be valedictorian because I was also valedictorian in high school.”
Guzman was a Freeman Scholar in the Thomas F. Freeman Honors College. She was also a member of Tau Beta Sigma.
InsideTSU asked what TSU taught her.
“It taught me how to get uncomfortable. Nothing worth having comes easy. So that to me, just the entire experience of putting in work. That’s what TSU taught me. That in order to be successful, you have to put in work.”