Write an essay where you tell us about what drives you in your pursuit of your graduate degree.

After flunking out of one of the best women's colleges, I retreated back to my mother in Florida depressed, defeated. About 6 months later, I was ready to continue my journey. I faced doubts posed as statements. "You should go to community college." "You should try being a stripper, they make money." Then they morphed into questions, “Aren’t you tired?” "With your migraines, why keep going?" My replies resembled “Because, I want to make a difference.” In reality, it was much closer to home.
My brother, Sabir, is my biggest motivator. He can light up a room full of strangers with good looks and wise cracks. He’s the product of multi-generational unstable households, absentee father, unmediated ADHD, and schools who failed him. The birth target on his back is enlarged by his tallness, muscles, arrest records, and espresso skin. I consider him lucky because his unapologetic blackness has not completely eroded his rights. Both human and civil. Sadly, that is not the case for many who look like either of us.
Early on, I had the gift for helping people and the love of learning. This manifested itself in my eagerness to tutor my cousins and teaching my brother and youngest cousin how to tie their shoes. Bunny ears and loops just were not for us. As I grew older, I became passionate about helping the Sabir’s of the world, so that they could prosper despite the generational curses and societal biases pinned to them before they leave the womb. The first step was to educate them. That's why I joined AmeriCorps and will always continue to serve underrepresented youth. The second step is to advocate for them through the legal system, with goals of getting laws changed in their favor.
Like children, I believe adults do not change without consequences. I just wish these consequences were the same for every human being regardless of gender, race, or socioeconomic status. But, I guess in order for that to happen, black and brown youth must be seen as humans first.

Areaona from Connecticut
Western New England Law