I never really understood the quote, “Good things fall apart so better things can fall together,” until I experienced a difficult but defining time in my life. As a child growing up in South Los Angeles I lived in a single parent household with my mom, two older bothers, and my uncle who has cerebral palsy and requires intensive assistance; needless to say day to day life was a challenge. At the age of 14, my family and I unfortunately became homeless. As a result of these circumstances, I developed a strong desire to achieve higher education and grow academically.
As I progressed through high school, I joined this after school program in my community to occupy my time. The GRYD program is an afterschool program that offered me a free mentor and tutor as well as opportunities to participate in extracurricular programs like chess, art, radio and photography. I thought the program would help me with some of my personal problems and it offered me more than I could ever imagine. I made so many great connections and friendships with the mentors and staff who worked at the program. I became heavily involved in the GRYD program and more importantly, I began putting more effort towards school and my academic achievements. In my freshman year of high school, I went from a 2.7 GPA to a 3.3 GPA by my junior year. I began to challenge myself by taking intense college course at the University of Southern California (USC) in which I earned nine units towards college and 30 credits towards high school. I was awarded a Scholar Athlete Award for maintaining 3.7 GPA during basketball season. As I began to see my progression due to being involved I explored more opportunities. I joined many programs such as USC Upward Bound, Fox Mentor, Mock Trial, Teen Court, and Young Lawyers. By my junior year, the GRYD program offered me an opportunity to join the Accelerated Radio Program taught by a professional radio dj. Through this involvement, I was offered an opportunity to go live on air and broadcast to an international audience. The radio program was held two days out of the week, and was an outlet for me and other students to broadcast our voices and talk about issues that were going on in our community and what we could do to help.
Due to the situations I have experienced in life, I am eager to give back to my community. My ultimate goal is to be a superb lawyer and Supreme Court Justice. In order to achieve my goal I will continue to excel in school, graduate college with honors, attend law school and pass the BAR. Furthermore, I would like to start a nonprofit organization to help guide and inspire youth who neither have the inspiration nor the support they need to succeed. As a result, giving back to my community is the most important quality I carry. I am extremely honored to be receiving this scholarship. Receiving this scholarship helps motivates me to continue to strive for excellences.