Trameka Pope is a exceptional young woman who has overcome many challenges in her life. She was homeless in grade school, pregnant in eighth grade, and gave birth to her daughter just three days before starting high school. But instead of giving up on her dreams, she worked hard to excel in her studies and extracurricular activities. She became the valedictorian of her senior class at Wendell Phillips Academy High School in Chicago, earning more than $600,000 in college scholarships.
Trameka’s story is not only inspiring, but also rare. According to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, only 40% of teen mothers finish high school, and less than 2% earn a college degree by age 30. Teen pregnancy is also associated with higher rates of poverty, unemployment, and health problems for both mothers and children.
Trameka defied these statistics with the help of her supportive family, teachers, counselors, and mentors. She also had a strong motivation to provide a better future for her daughter. She said, “I always said that I wanted to make change and I wanted to be in the history books, and I started with myself.”
Trameka took college prep classes at Kennedy-King College while attending high school. She was also a cheerleader, a member of the National Honor Society, and a prom queen. She applied to nearly 30 colleges and was accepted by most of them. She chose to attend Western Illinois University, where she plans to major in social work.
Trameka’s achievements are remarkable not only for a teen mother, but for any student. She is an example of resilience, determination, and excellence. She deserves to be celebrated for her accomplishments and encouraged to pursue her goals. She is a role model for other young women who face similar challenges and aspire to higher education.
Trameka Pope is proof that anything is possible with hard work, dedication, and support. She said, “You can’t let your situation define you. You have to make your situation better.”
Khadijah Williams is a remarkable woman who overcame homelessness, poverty and abuse to achieve her dream of studying at Harvard University. Her story is one of resilience, determination and courage in the face of adversity.
Khadijah was born in Los Angeles, California, to a mother who struggled with drug addiction and mental illness. She became homeless at the age of six, and spent most of her childhood moving from one shelter to another, sometimes sleeping on the streets or in abandoned buildings. She attended 12 schools in 12 years, often facing bullying, violence and discrimination from her peers and teachers.
Despite these challenges, Khadijah never gave up on her education. She loved reading and learning, and saw school as a way to escape her harsh reality. She enrolled herself in various programs and extracurricular activities for low-income students, such as Upward Bound and A Better Chance. She also sought out mentors and role models who encouraged her to pursue her goals.
She excelled academically, graduating fourth in her class from Jefferson High School with a 3.9 GPA. She applied to more than 20 colleges, and received acceptance letters from many prestigious institutions, including Harvard University. She chose Harvard because she wanted to learn from the best and make a difference in the world. Continue reading about Khadijah here.