"Achieve the Honorable"
I’m always surprised when I get a surprise, because I think I have experienced so many wonderful adventures that I relish the art of learning something new! I am on the HHSAA Scholarships Committee. So we were given a stack of thirty-five applications to study. I knew it would take a couple of hours because I ponder; eschew each thought and expression by these bright young graduate students. I was impressed with the accomplishments of these outstanding students.
I read the grade point and perfect attendance of one seventeen-year-old child. Yes, she is still a child under law, but in reading her life story in less than three paragraphs, my heart cried for her courage and determination to do better than anyone in her family. Her poor and broken home life was enough to excuse anyone from a role of excellence, but she stayed focus and achieved the Honorable.
There were nine applications that really caught my attention. One young man had a 3.9 grade point, excelled in sports, and did not know English until he entered Hollywood High School in the tenth grade. He had to learn English in high school and attend all the subjects English... Science, Math, History, French or Spanish...Everything in English when he didn’t even have the command for English! There were three students that spoke other languages when entering Hollywood High School not speaking English and still they rose to the top of Excellence!
There is an organized and fair way of grading used by the University of Southern California and UCLA. The first part of the selection is based on the student’s grade point, school activities, and participation in extra college programs.
A few days of digesting these students’ accomplishments past, but the haunting stories of these dear children’s love for their family played over and over in my mind. I couldn’t sleep; I was so moved by such strong young human beings. Their love and devotion to their parents is so real. There are lots of children who can learn from these examples of champions.
How spoiled so many American children have become taking education for granted, but not these grateful kids. I felt humbled knowing my life had been much easier than theirs. Everyone I knew had educated, successful parents. Everyone was expected to go to college and graduate school. Everyone I grew up with went to college and most children had parents who paid for it.
The Highlight was the day we interviewed the twelve students who were in the top of our selections. I WAS IMPRESSED!! The girls came in dressed like ladies and the young men wore jackets and ties. This was a great suggestion by the gracious advisor. They were each charming, interesting and endearing to my heart. I felt such a love for these beautiful young men and women. Each had surprised me with their life accomplishments and tragedies.
How grateful I am to be a part of being able to share with these students. My biggest disappointment is the night of the awards I had a stomach attack and couldn't attend. I was looking forward to watching your faces and smiles. I wanted to share the joy with your families. But I was there in Spirit and am here to help and give advice anytime as you continue your education and life.
These are the students who won scholarships from our Alumni Association and your generous donations.
By Carole Wells
Author of Amberella
Posted By: Emmanuel Aquino (2009) - Community Manager