Personality You're Contributing

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Everywhere I go, a stereotypical view of me is slapped on my back as my identification piece. An identification piece that labels me as, “African, poor, and disposable.” It’s that stereotypical viewpoint that usually holds me to a standard below that of my ability. Two people in the world don’t underestimate me by holding me to that standard. Those people are my parents. Being less fortunate than I, they were not able to live in a country that takes education so seriously. Both have only finished high school and the thought of a four-year institution is exactly that, a thought. Since I've entered Townview Magnet all their much needed and appreciated homework help and late night project aids have stopped. Not because they’re unwilling but because they’re unable. High school gave me a platter of opportunities, but also took away my most valuable help line.


With the cutting of my help line also came a burden: a burden to lift not only my parents but my family out of the socioeconomic hole into which society has dumped them, a burden to make my mother’s time worthwhile as she goes to community college to improve herself while she manages a five-member family, a burden to make my dad’s time worthwhile as he works seventeen hours a day to support our family, a burden to give my little brother and sister an older brother to look up to. A burden to release myself from the identification piece that labeled me as an inadequate African. A burden that I can only be released from by being the first in my family to attend college. This hardship has shaped not only my personal responsibilities and my academic credentials but also my personality - a personality that screams, “I am Ethiopian, poor, and proud.” I will be contributing this very personality to The University of Texas at Dallas.





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