Disabled student graduates, gives back to community

After a car accident resulted in paralyzation at the age of 18, Ronald “Ron” Aguilar shifted his focus from gang-related activities to completing his education.
Aguilar worked at ELAC’s Disabled Student Program and Services department in order to receive the hours necessary for his major.
In 2010, Aguilar received his bachelor’s degree from California State University, Los Angeles in rehabilitation services in 2010 at the age of 48.
Aguilar became an assistant counselor at the DSPS department.
He was tasked with assisting disabled students as a peer adviser, and to also give advice on classes and careers.
“He liked showing students around the campus and take them all over the place,” Grace Hernandez, DSPS coordinator said. “We knew his health wasn’t the best so sometimes we’d tell him he didn’t have to do that stuff, but he would just say ‘I just want students to see the best of ELAC.’”
Prior to Aguilar’s death in 2014, he was working toward his master’s degree in rehabilitation services.
“He would always be there ready for when school started again. He was so motivated and it even pushed me to keep trying so we could finish the program together,” Conie Zepeda, a co-worker, said.
Zepeda said that it was a dream of hers and Aguilar’s to start a business that offered support services and motivation to high school and college students.

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