Good evening everyone, and thank you for joining us for this once in a lifetime moment.
With some help from my boyfriend, I moved into an apartment, and started living on my own when I was fourteen. It was challenging at such a young age. There was a point in time when I was working three jobs just to get by. Later, I began falling behind and losing credits in school. Yes, I did get into my share of trouble. I was not an angel. The balance between work and school became increasingly difficult, and during my senior year I missed three months. Luckily, I found a solution to my education problems; ACES High School.
I enrolled into ACES Night School, which is a wonderful program. This program was made for teenagers like myself, who need to work more than twenty hours per week. Night School starts at 3:45 and ends at 8:00 p.m. You can come and go to Night School as long as you meet the attendance requirements. This worked out great for me because I worked mornings and came to school after work. Slowly but surely, I began improving. This program made me a more responsible person. I set my own guidelines and goals, and actually started abiding by them. As the end of the year got closer, I realized that I still wasn’t working fast enough. I didn’t think I was going to graduate on time. My only option was to work less, and go to school more. About a month before graduation, I still needed to finish more credits. I worked very strenuously. During all of this, I was applying for scholarships with the help of Sharon. Before today, I have already received three scholarships. I actually earned some of the scholarships I applied for. Sharon was an incredible help.
I would’ve never made it this far with out the help of many people. Linda, Shirley, and Wally helped me with my schoolwork. Sharon helped me by urging me to apply for scholarships. Falina, Dennis, Mrs. Mueller, and Mrs. Vea helped me daily with everything they could. The entire ACES administration did more than help, they changed my life. If I never started attending ACES, my future would not looked so bright.
I also received help from my parents, my boyfriend Jay, and his Mom; Robin. There have been thousands of times when I needed help, advice, and even food. Robin assisted me in all three areas.
Last but not least, I wanted to thank my friends. Rachelle Palmer helped me get my priorities straight, which made it possible for me to graduate.
I don’t want to be remembered for my struggles, but for my drastic improvement. I want every student to know that life will not take it easy on you. Life doesn’t feel sympathy, so DO NOT ever give up. If you need a reality check, think of your future. Every student here still has a whole lot of growing up to do, regardless of age. Don’t take ANYTHING for granted. ALWAYS keep your head up and never quit.
CONGRATULATIONS Class of 2004!!!
We Made It!!!!