From fields to classrooms: Former Salinas farmworker earns bachelor's with honors at 58

Adolfo González helps his granddaughter Kayla with her homework at his Salinas apartment.


Adolfo González has a whiteboard next to the dinner table in his Salinas apartment.

When his granddaughter Kayla has a tough math problem, he takes a break from his own studies to go over the equation with her, in Spanish.

Markers in hand, they calculate together until Kayla, 11, can do them on her own.

González, 58, learned these methods as a child, when he moved from his rural village in México, speaking only his native Zapoteco, to the internado, a school for indigenous youth in the city. This was before he dropped out of school to go north to the U.S. to support his mom and siblings.

In the Salinas Valley, he worked for years in celery fields to support his family.

Read more by Eduardo Cuevas, Salinas Californian