As a Marymount University graduate and an alumni of the Generation Hope program, I understand the importance of educational attainment to create a better future for our children.
At the age of nineteen and a sophomore in college, I found myself pregnant and unemployed. I remember hiding my pregnancy from family and being so ashamed. Becoming pregnant and dropping out of college was a trend in my family. Finding out I was pregnant while in college was a disappointment because I knew the assumption for me to drop out of class would now be put on me.
After telling my family, I knew I needed to make some changes in order for me to raise my precious bundle of joy, and continue college. I moved back home and completed my last two semesters from Savannah College of Art and Design online. I applied for multiple jobs a day while simultaneously completing assignments, quizzes, and tests. I also meet with local school counselors that had my program of study.
After having my daughter Skye in April of 2012, I landed a job in the government part-time and was able to transfer my college credits to Marymount University in Arlington,Va. I studied day in and day out while feeding, bathing, and changing my daughter. It was stressful and exhausting, but rewarding to know that my child would have a better future when I received my degree.
I became a scholar of the Generation Hope program beginning my senior year of college. Generation Hope has provided me with an abundance of motivation, love and support. I was also inspired and moved to learn the stories of other scholars. Each scholar had a different story; some subtle and some harsh. What they all had in common, however, was the drive to succeed. Everyone supports everyone!
After graduating with a B.A. in Fashion Merchandising in May 2015, I became passionate about giving back to Generation Hope and am excited to be their new Program Coordinator! I am looking forward to helping other expectant teen parents rewrite their story.