Tag Archives: family

Friends Who are Like Family at NMMI

By Cadet Carlos Andres Retamoza

My name is Carlos Andres Retamoza, and I am 16 years old. I am from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. At the age of 15, I went to live outside of my country to study at the New Mexico Military Institute. I think I threw myself into the abyss with all of the other students. It was the first time I left the country, and I did not speak the language of my new country of residence. I was going to live with strangers, and within days of arriving, I started classes within a system totally unknown to me. I came to study at the New Mexico Military Institute without knowing it was the best decision I had made in my life. Every day, every activity that I had to carry out was an apprenticeship.  Sometimes apprenticeships were full of pleasant surprises, and other times they were apprenticeships full of frustrations and effort. During this period, one of the things I learned was the importance of the friends I made at the New Mexico Military Institute. Many of these people were international students, like me, who were going through the same experience that I was going through, and they perfectly understood my difficulties. They quickly became an important support network and even more, I discovered that due to the circumstances that bind you, these friends happen to become “your family” while you are away from home. There are many stories that I can tell you about the support, the laughter, the love, and the solutions found together with friends. There are many stories that happen with my friends at the Institute, and I can tell right now the importance of all of them. Having friends and knowing that I am surrounded by so many wonderful people strengthens me.  Every time I have had to go through some difficult situation, I have never felt alone even though I am so far from home. That’s why I consider friends the greatest treasure you can have while living abroad.

A Piece of Home at NMMI

By Cadet Sierra Walker

 

Having a sister at New Mexico Military Institute is great. But, there’s something even better than having one sister at NMMI… having TWO! This is my sixth year at the institute, and I have been blessed with having the opportunity to attend the last five years with at least one of my three sisters. Two of my younger sisters, Mia and Tessa, are currently enrolled here at NMMI.  Mia is a junior, and Tessa is a freshman.

I love that I’ve had the chance to attend school with my sisters because it has brought us all closer together. We spend a lot of time here with each other. My favorite time to spend together is in the dining hall.  I love eating with them because we get to talk about our day and fill each other in on things that are going on. Before we came to NMMI, my family and I would sit down every evening at dinner and go around the table saying one good thing and one bad thing about our day. Eating dinner with them brings that little piece of home here to NMMI.

NMMI has provided us with many opportunities to spend time together. We all run cross country and track, so we get to see each other every day for practice. Having a sister here is awesome. The best part is that I always have a friend, or two, that I can count on no matter what. We have formed a special bond that we will share forever.

I am so grateful that I have been able to spend my last year here at the Institute with Mia and Tessa. Next year I will be in a different school and that will limit our time together. I am cherishing these moments I have with them now because I may never get to experience an opportunity like this again.

Leaving the Nest

My family’s experience of me at NMMI

By: Cadet Madison McLean

Growing up my mom always told my sister and I we were her little birds, always in her nest and when we were ready, we would have to leave the nest eventually. When I decided I wanted to go to NMMI, I was 15 years old. And I knew I was going to have to leave the nest for the next four years of high school. My parents were excited for me, it was a chance to get a great education and an experience of a life time. And the one rule my dad had for me was once I start NMMI I must finish. I started my first day at a preparatory summer camp for math and then transitioned into RAT week. During that period of time I couldn’t have my cell phone for three weeks. Throughout those three weeks I wrote to my little sister and parents on a weekly basis and it was hard on all of us as a family. My parents mailed me a package of school supplies and items I was running low on, and my dad hid a bag of my favorite candy in the package. Even though I wasn’t at home they still found a way to put a smile on my face.

When I saw my parents for my 21-day ceremony they told me how proud they were of me and I could see they missed me greatly. The first time I could take a furlough home, I sat down with my dad and he told me how much he missed me and that it wasn’t easy for my mom and him to send me to NMMI. But they had to make that sacrifice of not seeing me every day for giving me the best education possible. Every time I went home for a holiday, we always spent time together to make up for not being together often throughout the school years. As years went by and my four years came to a close, I realized I had a stronger relationship with my family, and they were able to accept me leaving my mom’s nest. Attending NMMI was not just an experience for me, but for my parents and sister as well. They were my biggest fans at all my games, my supporters through my academics, and with me every step of the way. If anything, they attended NMMI with me for those four years and we celebrated every moment together.

Happy Holidays from NMMI!

On behalf of everyone at New Mexico Military Institute, we wish you and your family a very joyous holiday season and a Happy New Year!

Why I Came to NMMI–And Why I’ve Stayed

By Cadet Diego Salido

One of the most repetitive questions I have been asked as a cadet is “Why are you at NMMI?”

Most people assume that I am a troublemaker and my parents sent me here to fix me, which is something that you will not find very often here at the Institute. Most of the people come here because of their own choice and because they are looking for a challenge. In my case, I came here following my brother’s example and his advice. He told me that it was the best choice I could make and that I would not regret it. I had to think about it for more than a year, and finally I decided that I wanted to accept the challenge. After my first year, the question became “Why did you stay” and the answer is really simple: I stayed because of the people–the family I found here, and the opportunity to be someone better. I do not regret a single thing since I got here and I have enjoyed my ride. I still have a year left until I graduate and I know that I will miss everything and everyone when I leave.

Salido