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Rio Salado College Student Publishes Personal Journey: ‘A Second Chance at Education’

Cordero Holmes

Rio Salado College Student Publishes Personal Journey: ‘A Second Chance at Education’ 

Rio Salado student Cordero Holmes is a Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) honor student and current PTK Arizona Region leader, a former student senator for the college and a leading cheerleader for all things Rio.

If asked in his early 20s to describe his future, Holmes would likely narrate a much different path. He describes his journey - from discovering Rio Salado College while incarcerated to his current aspirations of completing a bachelor’s degree upon graduation from Rio this fall - in “A Second Chance at Education,” published this week by Higher Learning Advocates. The article was the result of Holmes’ participation in a spring Presidents Forum convening, of which Rio Salado College is a member.

Holmes’ story includes this advice to anyone and everyone who is unsure about what’s next: 

“Ultimately, if you want to accomplish anything, whether it’s an education or something completely different, there are going to be challenges. But you have to find a way to keep moving forward. Even when you don’t know how to make everything work, keep going and you’re going to figure it out. Rio Salado College has been so helpful to me in figuring it all out, but there is support out there for all of us, whatever our previous life circumstances, current challenges, and future goals are.”

A husband, a father and a full-time worker, Holmes knows it can all be a juggle. He recently spoke to Tempe leaders about the value of education. Last school year he took part in Rio Salado’s PTK College Project, Student Navigator, a pilot program designed to support and help new-to-college students. Holmes also uses platforms to advocate for incarcerated students and Rio Salado College’s Re-Entry program.

“Cordero’s drive and enthusiasm for life is refreshing and contagious,” said Rio Salado College President Kate Smith. He inspires not only his fellow students, but the Rio community on a regular basis. We look forward to seeing where his path will lead him and are grateful he invited us to be a part of his journey.”

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