Jose Luis Zelaya

Jose Luis Zelaya is an aspiring teacher who is passionate about higher education, the nature of resilience and community empowerment. Jose Luis is currently a Doctoral student at Texas A&M University in the Urban Education Program.

However, Jose Luis also understands the consequences of poverty, violence and family separation. Since a young age, Jose Luis became a street child in the streets of Honduras and experienced physical, emotional and psychological stress due to the separation of his family. At the age of 13, Jose Luis made a dangerous journey to the United States to reunite with his Mother and younger sister who were living in Houston, Texas.

With the grace of God, Jose Luis was able to reunite with his family in the United States. His Mother quickly enrolled him in Middle School where he rapidly learned English and embraced his new culture. He became the first in his family to ever graduate High School. Thankfully, Jose Luis lives in Texas which is the first state that allowed undocumented students access to in college. Without instate tuition, Jose Luis’s story would not exist. He continued his education and graduated with a Bachelors and Masters in Education at Texas A&M University where he currently studies a Ph. D. in Urban Education.

HB1403 was the key factor that allowed Jose Luis to become a motivational speaker, a teacher and an educated Texan!