When I enrolled at the Air Force Academy, I severely overlooked the nature of the institution. For the most part, I knew what occurred on campus, but I did not anticipate subtleties such as the mindset of most cadets and officers, nor did I understand the importance of (or lack thereof) cadet’s future goals versus the goals of the Air Force. My aims and the aims of the Air Force are not the same, leading me to search for opportunities elsewhere.
Seeking knowledge and commitment to service are qualities that were instilled in me early in childhood. Both of my parents are first generation college graduates in their family. They are both products of hard work and commitment.
University of California - Santa Barbara Undergrad
I come from a lower middle class family where we experience financial struggles. For most of my life, my father has been the provider of four children and his wife. My mother suffered from a devastating automobile accident in 1984 that left her physically unable to use her right hand and has caused her many problems with the right side of her body.
In the over-scheduled haze of adolescence, many teens long to go back to the simpler days of kindergarten, but few actually get to live out this fantasy. However, I am lucky enough that once a week I get to spend my morning in kindergarten and I even get paid to do it. To clarify, I do not just sneak into my synagogue every Sunday morning to relive my childhood; rather, I am a teacher’s aid.
The World I Come From
After an arduous search for my identity in this world, I have come to classify myself as a Muslim African American young lady. Being lost for so many years has led me to embrace and appreciate the person that I have become.
Coming to the United States at the age of seven and transitioning into a new lifestyle different from my Sudanese ancestors’ was something beyond my young imagination.
"Ice. She needs ice," I repeat to myself. Sweat dribbles down my face. My arms pump to the steady beat of my mantra. My feet pound the dirty concrete. I have not sprinted this quickly for several months. My breaths have become short gasps, but I need to keep moving.
My path to delinquency began in the second grade.At the Montessori school I attended, students had a lot of freedom in deciding their own schedules. I was usually pretty adroit at balancing my own, perhaps with some long division one day, a report on Chester A. Arthur the next. Overall, I was nurturing an adequately well rounded education.
For many people, it can be very difficult to mark the time where they transitioned from a boy to a man. It can be harder still to mark the time when that journey began, in part because the journey to manhood is one that really begins at birth. Despite those difficulties, looking back on my life, I see a key date where my transition truly began.
My mother has always been my biggest influence. She was top of her class in school, completely entranced my dad with her beauty and charm, and did her job with the highest degree of excellence. This makes my mom great, but what makes her my biggest influence is her willingness to give everything up for me. She saved me.