I came to America at the age of five with my big sister to meet up with my mom. I never really met my mom because she left for America when I was small and I don’t remember her. It was nice to be here, but it’s so different from my home in Honduras.

I went to two different elementary schools, then attended Anderson Jr. High. After that I went to Chandler High. Chandler High school is where I was faced with many problems. It was there I started to get into trouble. I got into a lot of fights, skipped school and my grades dropped. I really hated school. All of my friends were trouble makers. I hung out with the wrong crowd to say the least. Eventually, Chandler High got rid of me and put me in Chief Hill. Chief Hill was no better for me. I was still a trouble maker and my grades weren’t very much better. I needed something different.

Next, they sent me to an alternative school called i-Learn at the YMCA. I had no idea this place existed. My first day there I was afraid of coming because I thought it would be the same. After a semester, I started doing a little better, I kind of liked school and was showing and giving other people respect. Mr. Martinez was nice to me and he told me he would help me get my credits to graduate. Now, I’m back on track, I like coming to school, and have some good friends here. Also, I’m no longer a trouble maker anymore. Amazing how things can change when you have the right attitude and the right environment. I’m glad I came here and for the help I received from the i-Learn staff. I even get to work out in the YMCA gym and stay in shape. One more thing, I have a mentor now, to help me stay on track and out of trouble. My mentor’s name is Sybil and she is a great lady and helps me get through the hard times.

I might have had a rough start, but I have found the place that makes me comfortable, where I can learn, get mentored, and be surrounded by good people. I will finish high school early and then off to college. I hope.

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