Transcript - 2016 SHINE Panelists
[UPBEAT MUSIC PLAYING]
My dad is Christian. My mom is Muslim. I live with my mom, and they didn't really believe in women having education. So as far as like before college, the last grade was third grade. And that was in elementary school. So at about the age of 17, I decided I wanted to get my GED and actually be a legitimate citizen and have credentials. I'm definitely first generation student. So my family is always super motivating, even though they're not directly here in Kansas. Even extended family, they're always motivating me and push me to do better, especially my dad.
I think I was a pretty good high school student. My GPA was north of 4.0. Did really good on my ACTs, something that would've gotten me into basically wherever I wanted. I didn't think that I could make it to medical school. I didn't think that I could do all these great things. I didn't think I could graduate from college, or much less get a bachelor's degree later on in life. Be married at this point in my life. But that would not have happened had I not come to Donnelly College.
My freshman year in high school, I was kind of on the wrong path. And I thought I was grown. And I just dropped out of high school. But I knew that I wanted an education, but not at that time. So I ended up dropping out for a couple of months and tried to get my GED. But it wasn't working for me. Gateway is a program for high school dropouts or kids at regular high school would have not worked for them. And they come here and it allows us to get college credits as well as our high school diploma. So that's a really good opportunity for us. And I am in the last part of my Gateway program which is called transition students. And I will graduate with 24 college credits.
You know, Donnelly College to me is sort of an anchor point here in Kansas City, Kansas. I'm not from Wyandotte County. I grew up in Raytown. And that time that I spent at Donnelly College, I feel like it connects me to the community in a way that I wouldn't of otherwise been able to be connected. Even through all the work that I've done in this community. I feel like there's a membership that's sort of conferred by being alumni of Donnelly. And so it's been really important to me.