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Hometown: Oxnard, California
Major: Biology
Graduation Date: May, 2015
Career Plans: OB/GYN (Obstetrics and Gynecology)

My decision to attend college was difficult because I became a mother in high school and I come from a low-income family. My mom is a single parent living paycheck to paycheck and I felt like I had to get a job right away to be able to help her. On the other hand, I had to ask myself, “Was I going to give my child the same life that I had?” After high school I decided to register at Ventura College because I didn’t have the grades to go straight to a university. I had so many doubts and questions in my mind. “How am I going to pay for my classes? Who’s going to take care of my child? What if I don’t understand the material?” I will never forget my first appointment with a counselor at Ventura College, she answered all my questions about getting Financial aid to cover my expenses, tutoring services, transferring to a university, Cal Works (a state program for single parents), and EOPS (a program designed for additional services for low-income families). Once the semester began I started getting involved in many of the programs offered to help me succeed.

Once I met with my EOPS counselor I began to think about my next steps. He was an inspiration to me because there were times when I wanted to give up and cry but he always told me that life is a rollercoaster, there’s going to be ups and downs but I can overcome these obstacles if I just try. Looking back, I am glad I made the choice to register for college. I graduated from Ventura College with an Associate’s Degree in Science and Math. I transferred to CSU Channel Islands where I will be obtaining my Bachelor of Science degree in Biology in the Spring of 2015, and I will be taking the MCAT after I graduate to start applying to medical school to possibly become an OB/GYN. I was afraid and worried about attending college in the beginning, but I realized that there are many programs out there willing to help you succeed. I have made many new friends and each person has their own story about how they have struggled and we were able to connect and help each other by being supportive. There were times where I had to retake classes because I didn’t understand a topic but I got additional help like tutoring and everything turned out fine. There are many opportunities out there that are willing to help you succeed, take advantage because you can make it too!