Austin Tarin’s life was changed when he saw a sponsored ad on social media and didn’t hit the skip button.
The Hobbs man is one of the 2022 winners of the Cheetos Deja tu Huella (Leave Your Mark) Fund.
“The ad posed the question of how what you are doing leaves a mark on the Hispanic community,” Tarin said. “I work with kids everyday as a contract coach at Hobbs High School. I coach and mentor them, and I also wanted to start my own business to give them a place to hang out at and stay out of trouble.”
Tarin said he wants to start his own food truck and call it “The Press Box,” where he will specialize in chicken sandwiches and biria tacos. He said he’d also like to have tables as well as a projector and screen so kids and adults could come hang out, eat and watch football.
“The money from winning this contest is a real blessing,” Tarin said.
He also expressed his desire to help kids who suffer from food insecurities at home.
But it’s not just Tarin having an impact on kids — the kids also have an impact on him. They make him want to be better and challenge him to achieve as much as he challenges them, Tarin said.
The $25,000 prize was awarded to help the winner achieve goals that will allow them to continue to impact the Hispanic community in a positive way, a compnay release stated.
“I am doing my best to leave a mark on the Hispanic community, but not only them. I want to help all kids across all cultures,” Tarin said smiling.
Tarin played football through all four of his high school years for Hobbs High School. After graduating in 2018, he signed on as a walk-on with Wayland Baptist University in Plainview, Texas and ended up receiving a scholarship there as part of his athletic endeavors.
He played and attended Wayland Baptist University for two years then moved to become a student assistant coach at the university, he said.
“This summer I started cooking and selling (sandwich and taco) plates on occasion, and I was amazed at the support I received,” said Tarin.
When Tarin posted a video for his entry into the competition, he was floored with the flow of support from his students, family, friends and even people from as far away as Lubbock.
“People were sharing the video like crazy,” said Tarin. “I’m just so blessed to have this kind of support from my community.”
As he moves forward, he plans to prep food in the mornings, coach in the afternoons and open his food truck up for business in the evenings. As long as this community supports him he plans to wear the hats of both chef and coach, said Tarin.