This graduate goes in the book for seniors close to my heart on such a deep and personal level. I first met Aaron when I was a Junior and he was a Freshman as he was new to the Multimedia department. Our first interaction was one that honestly wasn't the best. Not fault to either of us, as the situation was stressful in itself. Aaron being the kind person he is, remembered my name, even when I didn't remember his, and said hi to me whenever he saw me. Fast forward, my senior year. He asked me if I wanted to take a study break. We went for slushies. From that moment on, we became friends. In a short time, he became one of the closet people to me.
Since then, I have had a front row seat to watching Aaron bloom in so many ways. I've seen his creative ideas come to life, working along side him to produce his short film "Heavy Metal Elevator", another film project, and have seen his passion for the sport of rugby completely transform his outlook on life.
Adding to his list of accomplishments he doesn't always speak on, he along with two others started the ACU Rugby Club. Talk abut a need for a brag moment, these guys paved such an incredible road for rugby in Abilene. In the first couple years as a team, they managed to send three players to play internationally with the Lone Star Rugby Conference, a top tier colligate rugby all-star team. Aaron and the other players, took on teams in a New Zealand tour, the birthplace of rugby. I remember one day over breakfast he had an idea for his final year on the team... bring an international team to Abilene, something that ACU as a university has never done. In that moment, his dream became the Rampage Cup, in which the ACU Men's Rugby team faced off against the Chihuahua Guanines of Mexico. Because of Aaron and his incredible love for the sport, the game was played at a neutral site in El Paso, Texas and streamed on a well-known rugby network. Aaron's pancake rugby dream gave the ACU men's team a 55-5 win and a spot in ACU history.
The character of this man is truly one of a kind. Never in my life have I met someone who cares so deeply for those around them. Not to mention a sense of humor to match.
There are truly not enough words to describe Aaron, his heart, or the fiery passion he puts into everything he does. I am honored to have been a witness to his accomplishments and to have shot his senior portraits.
Thank you for being there for me, for the late night snacks, the laughs, the hugs and allowing me to be part of your ACU journey, as you would say, it was Metal! Most importantly, thank you for asking this small mammal for a much needed study break and getting a slushy that day. It is my hope that you continue to push expectations, explore all faucets of your creativity, and continue to break the mold. Never give up on what matters most, and every now and then allow others to lift you up as you lift others, both on the field and off.
Aaron received a Bachelor of Science in Multimedia with a minor of English. This summer he will be traveling to Amsterdam to play in an International Rugby Tournament in hopes of getting scouted for a pro contract.