University of Central Florida, Interdisciplinary Studies
I spent my first two years at Hamilton College, in Clinton NY, then decided to transfer down to Florida to the University of Central Florida. I am currently a junior and will graduate with the class of 2017. Since middle school I have always known that I wanted to choose the path to college, especially since my parents never had the privilege to do so because of financial difficulties.
I found out about the Take Charge Foundation through my Big Sister from the Big Brother Big Sister program, who thought that since I wanted to pursue a higher education I could benefit from being part of a small scholarship that would include the hands on support that I would need. Being able to be part of the Battier Take Charge family has allowed me to make good relationships with the foundation team. They are very supportive and are always checking up on me and holding me accountable on my journey of pursuing a higher education and becoming a better individual.
Through my involvement with the Take Charge foundation, I have learned that I am not very competitive, I am very analytical, and I also learned that when I listen to my instincts it can always land me greater opportunities and even happiness.
Something I have learned about Heidi that surprised me is that she is super funny and is a very down to earth and honest person, which made me feel comfortable around her (which is really hard for me). Something that surprised me about about Newell was seeing her dedication to making sure the Battier scholars know that she is always reachable and rooting for our (scholars) success through emails and many text messages. Something about Shane that surprised me was seeing how sensitive he was and caring towards his scholars and family. I got to know them all much better at the Leadership Retreat, which contained good presenters in a homey and refreshing atmosphere.
Five years from now…..I am not sure where I see myself five years from now, so I do not want to think about ten years from now, but I know that they will be in great places with blessed opportunities. I have a couple of projects in mind, but initially I want to do some form of work advocacy for minority women in environmental working fields after graduating.
For high school students that may find themselves asking what their next moves should be, I would say try different things, take risks and never give up. I give this advice because as a high school student I learned more and gained more opportunities from doing things that many around me said were not beneficial to me pursuing a higher education. Taking risks allowed me to figure out what I wanted to major in while in college and lead me to obtain opportunities and that I thought weren’t tangible. To think I almost didn’t become a Battier Scholar because I was afraid that I would not be chosen…..but look at me now!