Over these past few months, I have had the privilege of working with great and fascinating students. I have been grateful to have been given an opportunity to influence and direct today’s youth in a college/career pathway. With that being said, one of the students that I chose to highlight in this short story is an eighth grader that lives in the catchment area.
Currently, this student lives at home with their mother. Although it is just the two of them who live at home, mother and student both demonstrate a strong and compassionate relationship between one another. I have had the opportunity and privilege to be invited into their home, where they have felt comfortable to invite me into. Both were very welcoming to me as well as the Academic Advocate program.
I chose to highlight this student because right off the bat, this individual has taken the initiative in getting himself equipped with the proper tools to get him started and prepared for a college pathway. When I met the student and mother for our intake session, I recall the mother telling me that the student had asked his mother to enroll him into the program. Although this student knows where he would want to be in life, their struggle comes in not knowing how to get there.
This student has been currently involved at Hilltop Middle School in any form possible. Whether it is by being a member of the Associative Student Body (ASB) or taking a seventh period where he practices an additional foreign language, this student does not skip an opportunity to get involved in school. This individual has made sure to always be on top of his assignments at all times. Furthermore, this student did not struggle with settling in during his transitional stage of sixth grade to seventh. Now, as an eighth grader, he has continued to maintain good grades and is currently performing well in school.
After working with this student for a few months, I have had the privilege of not only inviting but participating in events with them, such as the District Wide College Fair, held at Castle Park High School (CPHS) and MEChA’s High School Conference that took place at San Diego State University (SDSU), that expose our students to a college going culture. I believe that it is through this exposure that the student will gain that confidence and proper navigation on how to get to college. It is always great to see when parents see their students light up in excitement, especially for education.
Our role as advocates goes far beyond referring families to programs that will tend and assist their needs and mentorship. Our role is to connect bridges and support our families with having their student reach their highest potential goals in this life. I will continue to motivate this student, along with the rest of my cohort, in achieving their goals. Although this student is performing well in school, my promise to him and his mother is to continue his focus and determination in school. I will continue to expose them to potential universities that he will one day apply to.