This patience enabled me to find local community colleges in my new place of residence—Los Angeles. Then, I found Upward Bound. I lacked the requirements to join the program: two letters of recommendation, a middle school transcript, and a current school of attendance. I could not show Upward Bound my gaps in my education. I remembered a conversation I had with a pimp to get him to leave me alone, so I used the same logical frame of mind to explain to Upward Bound why I would be a great fit for the program. "Look, I moved around too much to have a transcript, but I skipped from 8th to 10th grade, and I have earned a 3.85 G.P.A.. I want to go to college, and I will take on any challenge to get there." The pimp was driven away, and Upward Bound accepted my application.

As I fill out my college applications to Harvard, Williams and Amherst, my dream schools, I am thankful for what I have been through. Being homeless has given me the skills I need to succeed on the pathway towards my higher education pursuits and life-long goals. My experiences have made me a dedicated student both inside and outside of the classroom. I do not let anything stop me from achieving my goals. Hearing such negativity where I have lived has enabled me to focus on my goals and remain optimistic, even when faced with grave adversity. Having to depend on myself for food has enabled me to take charge of my education. I have learned to be resourceful and diligent and I am confident in saying that I am a very self-motivated and determined individual that will stop at nothing to receive an education. When I go to college, I know that this acquired knowledge and skills will enable me to succeed in whatever I do.

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