[A] few years ago, I was seventeen years old, alone in a bathroom, staring down at a positive pregnancy test.
I had absolutely no idea what was going to happen to my life. I had already submitted my statement of intent to register to the University of California Berkeley, a school I was thrilled to soon be attending, and that pregnancy test made me doubt whether my dream was going to happen.
Even though I received no familial support or support from my partner, I decided to have my child and set off for Northern California alone in 2011, in order to start my first semester at UC Berkeley as a bright eyed freshman eager to learn and take in the college experience.
I would be lying if I said it wasn’t the most demanding thing I have ever had to do. I had to learn how to live on my own for the first time, pay bills, deal with health insurance, and tend to a growing pregnancy; all this as a child fresh out of high school lacking any support.
Having my child was one of the most beautiful experiences I’ve ever had but being a single mother at a school as rigorous as Cal soon took a toll on my physical and mental health. As I took my classes and wondered what on earth I wanted to study, a friend of mine introduced me to public health. After going through everything I had been through, I knew this was the major for me.
As a child, I grew up privileged in an upper-middle class lifestyle but I gave all of that up in order to have my daughter and pursue my education, a sacrifice I will never regret, because being a low income single mother has taught me so many things about the state of society that I would never have had the privilege to know if I had not chosen this route.
Now that I know the true struggles of my fellow low income community and the sometimes nearly insurmountable obstacles we go through to receive excellent health care and education, I know I want to major in public health and go on to become a nurse practitioner with that emphasis.
To graduate with this degree would mean the world to me because it would mean that I get to aid and guide. Cure and nourish. Serve and remedy. And that’s all I have ever wanted to do with my life.
Thank you for considering me for this scholarship, and I hope that my efforts are one that you would like to support.
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