As with any town in America people take the plunge to join a new situation or say goodbye to a place they have known all of their life. SHS graduate Darrian Greenwood is doing both of those things at the same time. An honors student, Warriors team leader, and counselor at the Youth Center, Darrian gave back to the Socorro community in many ways. Greenwood decided to pursue a career in Medicine at UNM. El Defensor Chieftain caught up with him to find out more about his reaction to living in the big city.
Question: What are your initial feelings having just graduated from Socorro High School?
Answer: We’re rapping up our fourth week during the summer semester on campus. It has certainly been a culture shock. Campus life is a lot of fun certainly but there are moments I miss home. Fortunately it’s only an hour away.
Q: How did you come to UNM? Are you on some type of athletic scholarship?
A: No I’m on an academic scholarship. My previous classes will help me move into the UNMH bachelors program which is big due to the physician shortage we have here in New Mexico.
Q: Is your playing career over and did you make this decision on your own?
A: Other than intramural stuff I’m done playing. With all of the injuries I faced I wanted to get into the sports medicine field which my family was always on board with. Being a physical therapist has always been my target.
Q: Why did you chose UNM?
A: Growing up as a kid I always wanted to go UNM. I had full rides at other schools like New Mexico Tech but the experience of moving and being out on my own was something that I wanted to do. My mom calls me all the time and I still go back to Socorro almost every weekend. It’s certainly an adjustment.
Q: Are you living in the dorms?
A: I have roommates. Six of us total in the program that live in shared student housing. We pretty much do everything together. We have a rigorous schedule in this health program that does not allow students to take on a job during the first year. It’s about getting as much experience as possible in the classroom.
Q: Have you decided on a major or are you still in the process of feeling things out?
A: My major is in Health Medicine and Human Values, or HMHV. It’s an overall bachelors degree before getting into a masters program where I’m looking into orthopedic medicine and then entering into sports medicine. Overall I’m looking at around 13-14 years of school.
Q: Right now do you see yourself returning to Socorro, living in Albuquerque, or moving to bigger cities?
A: My goal is to practice somewhere here in New Mexico. It would be great to go back to Socorro but as long as I’m somewhere close to home then I know that I will be happy. But we’ll have to see what happens in the future.
Q: What is the first thing that you missed after leaving Socorro?
A: Probably my mom’s cooking. It seems simple but with all of the restaurants I can go to here all I wanted was the amazing food she made.
Q: When I first came to this paper and met Head Coach Damien Ocampo the first name that came out of his mouth as far as ‘team leaders’ was Darrian Greenwood. How does that feel and what is your plan during this next challenge?
A: I truly appreciate him saying that. Nothing is going to compare to the family aspect of a football or basketball team. I learned so much from all of the coaches and what they gave me. The youth center was also hard to walk away from. I miss the kids, the teachers and coaches every night when I go to bed. So many people that are still a huge part of my life that are already supporting me during this next stage.
Q: Is there anything you do not miss about living in Socorro?
A: Socorro will always be home but there are certainly a lot more things to do in Albuquerque. Going to places like ‘Main Event’ or ‘Cheddar’s’ with the group has been a lot of fun. So far this has been a great experience early on. I’m sure that I’ll hit a wall at some point as everyone does and miss my roots but so far it has been a lot of fun.
Q: A few random questions, what is your favorite movie?
A: I’m a big Marvel fan and I’m not going to say ‘Endgame’ because that just came out. If I had to pick I would go ‘Captain America: Winter Soldier’. It’s a great superhero movie that isn’t just all about the action but also has a great story.
Q: What is your favorite band, artist, or type of music.
A: I’m a big hip-hop guy. I mean Drake has been killing it recently. The music he dropped after the (Toronto) Raptors won the title just showed that he is amazing.
Q: Of all of the social media platforms, what is your favorite?
A: I use Instagram the most. The memes make me laugh. There is so much content on there. It’s great for a laugh and keeps me up with sports teams and I love seeing what my friends post.
Q: If there was something you could change about Socorro, what would it be?
A: I feel that the school system gets a bad rap. From my experience the teachers in Socorro are amazing. I’m a strong believer of you get out of your education what you put in. What I would change is the city’s drug problem. At this point it is crippling. You see kids sucked into it at younger ages every year. Of course it is happening in Albuquerque and all over too.
Greenwood will be busy with the UNMH program during his freshman year but intends to be on the sidelines at every Warriors game possible during this next season.