Buffalo State College
(BUFFALO, N.Y.) — This father and daughter’s bond just got stronger as they graduated college together.
Cesar Galarza and his daughter, Clarimar, both graduated from Buffalo State College in May.
“It was hard, it was challenging. We went through school during the toughest time, but we overcame,” Galarza said in an interview with “Good Morning America.”
In 2008, Galarza and his family moved from Puerto Rico to New York.
Nine years later, he decided to go back to school and continue his education.
Galarza graduated with an associate degree in social science and then went on to get his bachelor’s degree with his daughter at Buffalo State College.
School was especially hard, he said, because English is both his and his daughter’s second language.
Galarza said he owes his success to his wife of 24 years as well as his 15-year-old son, who would help him study and proofread his papers.
The 41-year-old said he would give his daughter rides to school, and they would eat lunch together when they could.
The pair even shared virtual classes together when the coronavirus pandemic hit during the summer of 2020.
“She did better than me. I did pretty good. But she always did better than me,” he said.
Galarza is now working as a pastor in his community while pursuing his master’s degree. Clarimar is still deciding what’s next for her.
For other parents or adults thinking of returning to school, Galarza said it is never too late.
“It’s always possible. I’m 41 years old, and I did it,” he said.
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