Collage photos of Telmar Munge-Ewane

When Telmar Munge-Ewane moved with her family from Maryland to El Paso her freshman year in high school, she found a world of new opportunities as a Pebble Hills Spartan.

Although Telmar spent her first year remotely learning in Pebble Hills Early College High School because of the pandemic, she was thrilled to explore her interests in dance, biomedical sciences, and other extracurricular activities when in-person learning resumed in her sophomore year.

"I just feel like they have so many opportunities here that they never had where I used to live in Maryland, like the early college program," said Telmar, a senior, who is on track to earn an associate degree in biomedical sciences and an EKG technician certification from El Paso Community College before she graduates from high school in May. "Other activities like dance and cheer, we didn't have that in Maryland, so I just think that gives me many opportunities to really express myself."

In recognition of her outstanding accomplishments, Telmar was selected to recite the Pledge of Allegiance at the Socorro ISD’s Board of Trustees regular meeting in February.

Despite the challenges of moving from the East Coast to West Texas, Telmar, an aspiring doctor, found herself thriving at her new school. She joined the early college student council, explored her interest in a medical career in the HOSA Future Health Professionals program, and got involved in the Spearette dance team, allowing her to express her love for dance.

Telmar joined the cheer team in her senior year and formed close bonds with her teammates. She also discovered a new passion for performing stunts at football games.

“It's amazing to have all these opportunities,” Telmar said. “I feel like having that environment and having the ability to talk to our counselors and Ms. (Melissa) Gardner, our assistant principal, I think really helped me feel safer and more comfortable in this school environment. I never really felt that way before. And it just makes it like a positive space for every student to be included and involved, and just to do everything that you want to do and to pursue in life.”

Telmar co-founded the Black Student Union (BSU) at the school in 2023 with the aim of building a stronger sense of community among minority students. The BSU has more than 30 members and its goal is to create a safer and more inclusive environment where students can discuss their concerns and learn about different cultures. The organization is open to all Spartans.

"Telmar is very determined in being well rounded," said Pebble Hills High School teacher Eric Williams, who also sponsors BSU. "She wants to be impactful in that aspect. She wants to have a say, have a voice; she wants to be heard, not only for herself, but be a voice for her peers.”

Telmar's decision to explore a career in healthcare was greatly influenced by her parents and sister, who are healthcare providers. Her family moved to El Paso after her father accepted a job as a pharmacist. Telmar joined her school's biomedical sciences program to see if this was the right path for her. Her experience in the EKG technician program this spring solidified her decision to pursue a medical career and become an obstetrics and gynecology doctor.

The EKG technician program is a semester-long Career and Technical Education course in partnership with EPCC that prepares students for entry-level EKG technician jobs after they earn their certification.

“I chose biomedical as my endorsement, and I absolutely fell in love with it!” said Telmar, who hopes to attend Texas Tech University or Penn State University in the fall.

Williams, who has known Telmar since her sophomore year and is one of her mentors, said he believes Telmar will achieve her dream of becoming a doctor, especially after seeing her balance her studies and extracurricular activities. "There's no doubt in mind," Williams said. "Especially that she can manage everything she has on her plate, and Telmar doesn't just manage it, she excels at it. I think she will be able to do that when she focuses on just medicine."