rebekah longAs I get older, I begin to understand the relevance, significance, and importance that revolves around obtaining an education. Education provides knowledge about the world, which paves the way to a better understanding of different walks of life. It gives me a perspective of looking at situations other than how I would initially like to see them. I have come to the realization that education is taught by life itself, but with this in mind, it is all about how I efficiently utilize what it is given to me to ensure my success.

The Grandmont Community Association Scholarship would not only help financially, but it is validation that I am on the right path of attaining my goal of majoring in Psychology at Michigan State on a pre-med track. I am invigorated to travel and hopefully spend some part of my education in another country by studying abroad, expanding my knowledge and leaving my footprint on the world. Ever since I was younger, I have held a deep passion for holding out a helping hand, rather than receiving it. I yearned to be a doctor, but at such a young age, I had no idea of the spectrum of doctors there was, just that doctors existed and they changed lives every single day. The notion of changing the life of just one person by becoming a doctor is an astonishing feeling I can only envision and an even greater excitement is returning to Detroit and inspiring others in my community to recognize that what I am doing is not impossible. I am an African American teen from Detroit, Michigan, but I am so much more than a statistic or stereotype. When I’m asked where I am from, my answer forces a grimace from the one who asked. These assertions empowered me to combat the preconceived notions placed on my community. My job is to educate the ones that grimace, the ones who assume they know based on what half-baked story the media regurgitates to them, rather than experiencing the motions themselves. My job is to even educate the ones in my community to not succumb to the generalizations placed on them, and to realize that their presence and heritage is imperative for the community to thrive. For the last three years, I have volunteered with children who live in the marginalized communities in Detroit through the nonprofit organization Summer in The City. As I guide and communicate with these children, the light in their eyes when I talk and their curiosity stemmed dialogue sustains that I am leaving a lasting impact and serving as an example for what these bright children strive to be. I am a living testament that represents a minority student achieving more than what society expects while striving to be better than who I am today.