(NEW ORLEANS) — One New Orleans family, who is set to graduate in May, became a sensation on Facebook when a photo of them all wearing their caps and gowns went viral.
The photo shows father Mario Myles, who is graduating from Xavier University with his Masters of Special Education on May 7, mother Shenitria Myles, who is graduating from Loyola University New Orleans College of Law with her JD on May 21, and their son, Mario “MJ” Myles Jr., who is graduating from kindergarten from Lake Forest Elementary School on May 23.
The photo was captioned: “#MayGrads #AFamilyThatStudiesTogether.”
Shenitria Myles, 26, said the photo was only intended for MJ’s grandparents, but didn’t realize when she posted it on Facebook that it would inspire many moms, who are also going to school. The mother, who had her son, now 5, while still at sophomore at Xavier University, where she met her husband, said she’s received at least 100 messages a day from moms around the world.
“It’s been a blessing and it’s been amazing to see that in the society that we live in now that…a picture like that [would go viral,]” she told ABC News. “There are still some families that are working hard to do their best every day and doing their best to make it happen and the picture kind of sums it up.”
Myles said that after she and her 28-year-old husband graduates, they plan to work in the area.
“I hope that we ideally just keep the progress that we’ve had,” she said. “It’s definitely been a long six years to finish undergrad and then for both of us to enter graduate school with no relatives in a seven-hour radius. It’s been trying, but it’s definitely been worth it.”
“There’s times when you’re not sleeping and not eating and [feeling like] today is the day that I give up,” Myles, who recently authored the book “Balancing Adversity,” added. “There are times that I come home and I’m laying on the couch and [MJ will] say, ‘Oh, you have to get up. You have to study,’ because he’s so used to us all coming home and just getting to work. He’s pushed me even more.”
Myles said that her family plans to celebrate with their families from Fort Wayne, Indiana and Atlanta with a huge celebration in May.
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