The University of North Texas at Dallas and Make-A-Wish Foundation's North Texas chapter celebrated a student who was born with a severe red blood cell disease and granted his wish for academic financial assistance.

Adrian Lopez, a freshman from Dallas, humbly expressed his gratitude in a ceremony during the annual Faculty and Staff Holiday Lunch. He is an excellent student and already had qualified for a scholarship, and the additional funding of $5,000 provided by Make-A-Wish will cover any other expenses he may have related to school. Adrian’s parents, Miguel and Alma, and his sister, Arlene, were also in attendance.

Adrian has pursued his education with few of his classmates, staff or faculty on campus aware of his medical hardships. He has sickle cell disease, and as part of his medical journey in recent years, Arlene donated bone marrow to her brother to help restore his immune system and create healthy red blood cells. Adrian, a Townview Magnet High School graduate, is majoring in business and is close to completing his first semester. After the event, he said having this wish granted will make it easier to pursue his goal of graduating from college.

“I really want to thank everyone at the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the university, we are truly appreciative of this as a family,” he said. “This will help with purchasing books and any other supplies I may need. It will help with all expenses related to my education. It will help us a lot financially as I continue my studies.”  

UNT Dallas President Bob Mong and Make-A-Wish North Texas Foundation Executive President & CEO Scotty Landry both praised Adrian’s remarkable perseverance and drive. Adrian has discussed also working in the future to raise awareness of sickle cell disease, its impact on children and treatment options.

Make-A-Wish North Texas serves 161 counties, with a goal to be a unique part of the treatment process by granting wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions.