I am a first-generation college student from my family. Prior to entering college, I was homeschooled for the last two years of my high school life. College was a priority after high school. I decided that no matter how hard it got, I was going to stick to it and follow through.
As I entered college, I did not have much guidance and support. Homeschooling limited my opportunities and resources. No one showed me how to apply for scholarships besides FAFSA. I financially struggled to pay for college and was soon faced with a bigger struggle. My father became unemployed and we lost our first ever bought home. It came to a point where I had considered quitting school and finding a job to help my family.
There was a lot of hope and strength lost. I was lost; I didn’t know how to look for additional financial support. I already had two part time jobs as a tutor and student leader at the U of M and on top of that being a full-time student.When I received the letter explaining that I was a Dr. Nancy “Rusty” Barceló Scholarship recipient, I was overjoyed. This scholarship gave me the strength I needed to push forward in life and not give up. This scholarship gave me the opportunity to continue pursing my educational goals to obtain my undergraduate degree. I am proud to say that I am now a college graduate with my Bachelor of Science in Youth Studies and Certificate in Human Resource Development. This scholarship opened a pathway for me and I hope that it continues to be available and awarded to women who are in need because this scholarship gave me hope to believe and the strength to not give up my dreams.
You can support stories like Samantha’s and #Build4Barceló by contributing to the Barceló scholarship fund.