Alexa, play Teyana Taylor’s “Made It”! Whew, where did the time go? Two years ago, I accepted my admission offer to attend Heller, and now I am sitting here two years later to tell you that I have completed all program requirements and will be graduating May 21st, 2023. I have written many, many, many blogs to you all before, but let’s take a trip down memory lane to my second blog post of my time here at admissions, “Letter to my Future Self”, and let’s respond back to little ole me from a year ago:
- The time has final come! It is May 2023 and you were able to complete not one, but two degrees during a global pandemic. Cheers to that! Even when everyone thought you were crazy for going into a Master’s program 3 months after graduating from undergrad, you were able to overcome and prove them wrong. – Yessssss, cheers to that! 23 years old with two degrees. Yes, you did go back to back and you did the darn thing, even if you broke a sweat or two. You overcame every difficulty faced and proved everyone wrong!
- Another exciting part is that not only have you gotten your Master of Public Policy, but your first best friend, Mom, is graduating at the same time with her bachelor’s degree. Please hold the tears for after the ceremonies. – After 20 years, my mom finally got her bachelor’s! I am extremely proud of her and it is unfortunate that our ceremonies ended up being a day a part from each other, so we are not attending hers. She has told me I am the one who inspired her to go back and get it done, but in reality she is and has always been the true inspiration and I would have not made it this far without her everlasting love and support. A lot of people doubted us, doubted our journey, doubted the outcomes, but here we are mother and daughter with degrees! 2023 is our year for sure!
- You have gained all this incredible knowledge on how to combat social inequities, where do you go from here? I hope that you stuck with your dream of creating an initiative that will educate formerly incarcerated individuals in California on why voting matters, how to register to vote, and making sure that their votes are counted! Do you plan to go back home to the Bay Area to assist your community in the fight to end violence? Have you taken your gems elsewhere to another community in need? Are you helping the fight for access to adequate government programs? – Even though I have not kicked off my initiative, I know that it is never too late! But I am happy to say that I will be returning to the Bay Area this coming August with a offer to partake in the City and County of San Francisco Fellows program, working in the government public sector, which I have always loved. My biggest goal was to always bridge the gap and fight for access to adequate government programs and within the fellowship program, I will be able to continue this process. Massachusetts degreed me, but the Bay Area raised me, and being able to take my gems back to my community is truly the best part.
- Do not forget to always be your best yourself in every situation. You have always been more than enough. I know you have not only impacted your own life, but others as well, which has and will always be your number one purpose in life. You were adaptable, strong, and resilient. I can not wait to see where and what you do in this next chapter. The price was high but the reward was greater. – I always admired how you always stayed true to yourself, no matter the situation or circumstance. You have shown endless resilience that maybe you sometimes felt wasn’t recognized. But even when you doubted the recognition, someone was always watching and appreciative. This program has showed you why you have always been more than enough and how your presences alone can fill a room. You prayed and manifested this next chapter: the reward was always greater than the price.
Thank you Heller for seeing my potential and trusting my skills that has led me to completing this program on time. Thank you to my cohort for showing up every day and inspiring me in more ways than I ever imagined. Thank you, Heller Admissions, for providing me with this opportunity to be able to share my story and insights to prospective students through emails, ambassador meetings, and the Heller Blog. Thank you to my family and friends for the continuous love and support as I navigated higher academia. So excited to become a Heller Alumna!