Tymon Aguilar said when he first came to Hardin-Simmons University
he had very little interest in art. Three years later he is destined to
graduate magna cum laude with a
Bachelor of Behavioral Science degree in graphic design. He is one of 271 students
who will take part in commencement ceremonies May 10, 2014.
“Art has really been a God thing for me and it happened after I
came to HSU. I really got a late start because I never took any art in high
school. I am just now really discovering my abilities,” said Aguilar.
Aguilar doesn’t miss a chance to credit his teachers for the spark
that now consumes him and promises to dominate his career.
“My professors are very hands-on and laid-back. It’s like being
taught by a friend. They are talented and down to earth. That makes it fun to
learn,” said Aguilar.
Aguilar has won a number of university art contests, most recently
winning 1st Place in the photography division of the 2014 student
art competition with his entry of 1ST
Corinthians, a project he said was inspired by the verses, “Love is
patient, love is kind.”
“Tymon has had much success during his time here at HSU, including
winning awards in the student art competition, but he would be the last to tell
you because he is very modest,” said Carrie Isaacson, assistant professor of
photography. "Tymon has a great attitude and a thirst for learning. He is
a pleasure to have in the classroom because he is not only talented and
hard-working but he is a good person with a heart for the Lord.”
Isaacson characterized Aguilar as very giving of his time to
others. Mike Jones, head of the Department of Visual Arts, points to Aguilar’s
volunteer work with the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program as an example of the
student’s interest in others.
Typifying Aguilar as a great artist with a heart of gold, Jones
said he is also a scholar who has managed to overcome some serious challenges.
“I’m dyslexic, so I have learned and continued to discipline
myself to try harder in school,” said Aguilar. “When other students were with
friends, I was trying to get a head start on studies. I remember doing math in
the 5th grade and staying up past midnight just trying to understand
That work paid off. When Aguilar took a college-level algebra
class in high school, he was the only one in the class to make an A. Aguilar later
graduated as the McCamey High School valedictorian, receiving a tuition
exemption for his freshman year, which he spent at Odessa College before coming
to HSU in fall 2011.
“I’m not smarter, I just have to try harder than most,” he said of
graduating first in his class. “A lot of students just do what is required, but
I have always had to push myself. I just want to be the best I can be, even if
it’s not a lot,” said Aguilar.
In 2013, Aguilar won 1st place in the student
competition’s sculpture category with his unusual Mayan Tooth etched with small Mayan symbols he encountered while
researching his family’s culture on the Internet.
“I was intrigued by a photo of teeth I found. I told Steve Neeves,
my professor of sculpture, that I had originally wanted to do a Mayan Temple,
so he helped me to figure out a way to do both,” said Aguilar.
Despite an interest in his cultural roots, Aguilar said he never
learned to speak Spanish. As a child, his mother came to the United States from
the Yucatan Peninsula when her dad found work in Texas. He says, when his mom
and dad met and married, they spoke Spanish so differently that English worked
better as their common language.
"Tymon was no doubt a great student to have in my classes,”
said Linda Fawcett, HSU professor of art, “but what struck me the most about
him was his outgoing, warm, and inclusive attitude toward everyone he
interacted with, from volunteering for extra activities, escorting a friend so
they wouldn’t be alone, to working after-hours to help a fellow student
struggling with a class lesson."
Aguilar said he is sad to leave his professors and HSU behind but
his future is already being molded as he and his brother Josh, a graduate of
the Art Institute in Houston, develop an idea to serve emerging businesses with
web design, photography, videography, and graphic design.
“He doesn't wait for everything to be handed to him but takes
initiative to discover and learn on his own,” said Jones. “It would have been
so easy for him to just focus on his own goals, but he has a heart that looks