Education as a Bridge for Disadvantaged Youth

Education as a Bridge for Disadvantaged Youth

I was born in the Hill District of Pittsburgh and reaised on both the east and west sides of the city. I entered the foster care system at the age of fourteen, two years after being in group homes on and off since age twelve. I entered the system due to my truancy and the mental health issues of family members within my home. I remained in the same foster home for about three years prior to entering Independent Living my senior year in high school. I graduated from Taylor Allderdice High School in Pittsburgh in 2009. During that time, I was accepted to Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina.

The Educational Assistance Initiative and Running for Laptops programs of Family Services of Western Pennsylvania provided so much help to me during my undergraduate career at Bennett College. The laptop I received made it convenient for me to get my school work done and stay on the Honors and Dean's lists. I was also able to obtain my driver's permit and license after completing driver's education classes. I will always be grateful for the support offered by Family Services. They have helped tremendously with my success.

I recently graduated magna cum laude from Bennet College with my Bachelor's Degree in Social Work and I will attend the University of Pittsburgh to obtain my Masters Degree in Social Work. I enjoy working with at-risk youth and hope to instill in them the importance of education as a bridge between disadvantaged youth and their transition into self-sufficient adults.

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