Two Prominent Speakers at Del Mar, TAMUK Conference

Summer doesn't necessarily mean a break from learning, at least it doesn't at Del Mar College.

It was Del Mar College faculty members who had a chance to be inspired on Wednesday. They heard from two high achievers.

One is considered by many an American hero after saving a congress woman's life. The other, a well-known television journalist with a hit Friday-evening program that asks, "What would you do?"

"It's a really nice feeling  to be able to be here with people who are so passionate about education," said Daniel Hernandez, a former U.S. congressional intern.

Hernandez helped save Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford's life after an attempted assassination in 2011. He spoke to the group about the "many faces of public service," sharing how he started public service at a young age, and now, after being elected to serve on a school board, how he hopes to do even more.

John Quinones also spoke, a person that is well-known to those who watch ABC's 20-20, Primetime Live and the program "What Would You Do?" Both men were invited to take part in the Del Mar College/Texas A&M University - Kingsville conference promoting education and public service.

The theme of the event was "embracing and empowering student potential."

"These are educators, and they wanted know how do we reach these kids? How do we inspire them," Quinones said. "And I think you inspire the kids by first believing in them, and not judging, as we find out in 'What Would You Do?' Not judging by outside appearances, or someone's accent, or the family history, but look at those students as individuals, and believing in them."

"It's important for us to take a break and hear a message that sort of reminds us why we are doing what we do," Project Assistant Director Rita Hernandez said. "And be assured that we reinstate that message, not only for ourselves, but to our students as well."

Organizers said the joint program between Del Mar and TAMUK is to promote and increase service to low-income students to help expand their potential and success in South Texas.


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