In our Senior Spotlight Series, we’ve followed YES Prep seniors as they set goals for their futures, applied for colleges, and made one of the biggest decisions of their lives. What does Senior Signing Day mean to YES Prep Southeast seniors, Crystal, Andrea, and Cesar? Where will they go to school next year? Find out now.
Senior Signing Day means breaking through stereotypes placed on minorities– especially Hispanic people. You are publicly committing to a four-year college and holding yourself accountable to that commitment. I’d like to thank Mr. Barbieri for helping me get to Senior Signing Day. He’s seen me mature a lot and constantly reminds me how much I’ve grown as a person. When my personal life started leaking into academics this year, he realized it and addressed it. He offered me a home when I needed a home. In college, I’m looking forward to studying abroad. I’m still deciding between University of Houston and Washington & Jefferson, but I should know by May 15.
For six years in a row, I watched others go up on the stage for Senior Signing Day. It’s exciting that it’s my turn to give younger students motivation and to show them, yes, it’s possible. Everyone can go to college. Don’t feel deterred to apply. I want to thank Ms. Kelati, my college counselor. She definitely helped my mom and me with the stress of financial aid. Also, I’d like to thank Mr. Barbieri, my AP psychology teacher. When I was trying to make my decision, he was real with me and talked to me about the possibilities. Mr. Hennessey helped me write my common application essay. Next year, I’ll be the first in my family to go to college. I’ll be attending Austin College as an IMPACT scholar. Austin College has a track for getting a Master’s degree in education. I’ve been researching education and writing papers about it, but I will actually get to put that into practice and become a teacher.
Senior Signing Day is a dream turning into reality. For seven years, I’ve been cheering on seniors, and it seemed like so far away. Now, it’s in just a couple of weeks. The event has been such an inspiration to me. I want to thank my mom because she taught me that education was the key to reaching my goals and that, if you put your heart into something, you’ll get where you want to go. I’d also like to thank Mr. Gillespie, my AP World History teacher. He’s the first teacher to really push me. He wouldn’t let me be satisfied with an A-. He’d push me to get an A or A+. He wanted me to do more work and keep trying. In college, I’m most excited about meeting new people and being in a diverse environment. I’m also excited about turning my passion into a reality. I can do something for the world through engineering. Next year, I will attend Stanford University.