College of Humanities and Social Sciences

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Scholarship winner eager to give back to community

October 28, 2021 / by / 1 Comment

After GCU student Angel Cervantes recently won an Arizona Justice Educators Association Scholarship, he gave credit to everyone else. That includes his parents, who run Hard Knocks Gym in Phoenix, and teacher Kevin Walling, Chair of Justice Studies, Government and History at GCU. “You can learn from everybody – athletes, my mom, mentors in my life have all taught me to have an open ear,” said Cervantes, who wants to be a detective and restore faith in law enforcement in his community.

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Doubly special: Mother, daughter graduate together

October 05, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

Ever since Linda Jessie and her daughter Brittainy Shirley started their respective graduate programs at GCU, they knew they wanted to sit together at graduation. After over a year of waiting, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the pair finally made it happen at this week’s Make Up commencement ceremony. “My mom’s amazing, she’s like my best friend and has had a huge impact on me being where I am today,” Shirley said. “It’s been really cool to say that I’ve been going to school with my mom and not just go to school with my mom, but be able to celebrate that accomplishment together.”

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Commencement to culminate her 16-year journey

September 20, 2021 / by / 1 Comment

When Desiree Ortiz put her education on hold 16 years ago, all she could think about was caring for her daughter, who was born with heart disease. Now, Ortiz finds herself in a position that she never imagined she’d actually be in — celebrating her graduation from her undergraduate sociology program. Ortiz is one of thousands of graduates returning to campus in the coming months to participate in makeup in-person Commencement ceremonies.

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GCU, opportunity in politics earn this student’s vote

August 25, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

Callista Mendoza always had an interest in politics, even from a young age. So when she decided to come to GCU and her first choice for a degree program wasn’t available, she decided Government was the best fit. That decision would lead her to her most recent opportunity, a contracted position as a field representative for the Leadership Institute.

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Social Work program lands accreditation candidacy

November 19, 2020 / by / 1 Comment

The Master of Social Work program at GCU achieved an important milestone by earning candidacy status toward accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education. Dr. Kathleen Downey, who led the effort, said it’s important for students currently in the program, who will be able to sit for licensing exams when accreditation is complete.

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From foster care to GCU grad: Carter defied the odds

September 21, 2020 / by / 0 Comment

Jacqueline Carter was placed in foster care at age 17, one week before she was scheduled to start at GCU. But a Good Samaritan arranged to have her live on campus, and now Carter has her bachelor’s degree and is set to start working on her master’s. Friday afternoon, Carter’s achievement was celebrated at the Arizona Department of Child Safety, where a small gathering included her favorite GCU professor.

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COVID-19 can’t rain on this doctoral grad’s parade

May 01, 2020 / by / 1 Comment

Dr. Eric Peterson refused to let the postponed Commencement ceremony dampen his enthusiasm about earning a doctoral degree. But what stands out about his story is that he had virtually no time to prepare for defending his dissertation because he spent most of the day with his mother at a hospital. It still turned out fine. “God knew what I needed,” he said.

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These GCU parents have a special view of graduation

December 16, 2019 / by / 0 Comment

Children often have a lot in common with their parents, but Sydney Teerink and Tori Triguero now have one more thing in common with their parents. Teerink and her mother, GCE employee Ra’Lene, as well as Triguero and her father, Dan, can all now call themselves 2019 GCU graduates.

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Mother-son duo graduates side-by-side

April 27, 2019 / by / 0 Comment

Melodee Breazeale and her son Patrick Jr. doubled their enjoyment of commence — they were side-by-side Friday morning as they both received their Master of Science degree in Psychology with an Emphasis on Industrial and Organizational Psychology. “I actually got to see my son right next to him while he was graduating. You can’t get any closer than that,” Melodee said.

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Q&A: Dr. Timothy Larkin, volunteer award winner

December 18, 2018 / by / 0 Comment

Seven years of teaching and facilitating Bible Study for residents of Phoenix Rescue Mission earned GCU sociology professor Dr. Timothy Larkin the Outstanding Teaching Award for 2018 from the Changing Lives Center for Women & Children, a shelter at PRM. “Such activity for me keeps me seeing with Christ-centered spiritual eyes and experiencing joy,” said Larkin, who provided insight in a Q&A with GCU Today.

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