2021 Senior Spotlight: Marielis Conde Mendez


The College of Fine Arts congratulates all students who are graduating this semester! We proudly celebrate the accomplishments of our students, like Marielis Conde Mendez, a Studio Art major and a first-generation, international college student.

Marielis Conde Mendez, School of Art

Marielis Conde Mendez photographed in Fort Worth, Texas on September 3, 2021. (Photo by Sharon Ellman)

Degree: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art

Hometown: Camagüey, Cuba

Why did you choose TCU for your education?

When I came to the U.S., I fell in love with Fort Worth. Driving by the TCU campus made me realize that I could be with my family and attend university with a higher education that will benefit me in the future.

Why did you choose to study art?

I have always had an interest in art. When I was little, I made toys out of playdoh and painted flowers and houses like an artist. As I grew up, attended grade school and obtained my high school diploma, I knew I wanted to study art. Nothing else interested me more than making artwork that made other people happy, and it especially made me the most comfortable. I became the first student in my family to attend university.

Tell us about your time at TCU.

During my time at TCU, I was able to join a sorority, the United Latinos Association and Student Support Services programs that focus on diversity at the university. Most importantly, ArtOrg helped me discover a little more about the art world and what is there for artists like me. I am also a McNair Scholar, which allowed me to explored my culture in-depth and conduct research that contributed to my final Senior BFA Thesis Exhibition, “now and back then; Cuba.”

What are your proudest accomplishments while at TCU?

My proudest accomplishment at TCU is being a first generation college student and setting a goal for the next generation in my family to do the same.

What will you miss most about TCU?

I will most miss my professors, mentors and the people who helped me in this long journey of becoming a more educated version of myself. These people made my time at TCU memorable and knowledgeable, which I will cherish and remember.

What’s next?

After graduation, I plan on taking a break from school, but that won’t stop me from finding a master’s program to attend for graduate school. But for now, I see a job in the art industry, where I can still make art on the side and potentially find other exhibitions and residencies.

Interview lightly edited for length and clarity.