I used to hate my name growing up but now I say it proudly, Bridget Burton. Growing up I didn't have the best upbringing. My family struggled financially as my mom tried to provide for eight kids on her own. My years of focusing on school were truly focused on surviving- physically and mentally. However, I knew when I grew up and was on my own I would then focus on obtaining my diploma. It was a goal I set for myself, no matter how old I was. After high school, I faced many more obstacles from paying bills, getting pregnant and then being diagnosed with cancer. Through it all, I never lost sight. In 2022 I received my high school diploma and am now enrolled into college. I enjoy being a mother to my amazing daughter and dream of providing her with everything I never had. She is part of my motivation in working towards becoming an RN, other than the fact that I enjoy helping others.
My name is Brenda. I am a graduate from YouthBuild Inland Empire. Prior to attending YouthBuild I was adjusting to my life of being married and having a child at a very young age. I dropped out of High School and I never thought I would have the time to continue my education. When I got married in December of 2011, 2 days after my 18th birthday, my husband and I lived independently. In March 2012, I became pregnant with my son. During my pregnancy, I experienced a devastating life experience that changed my whole life. Although I was struggling with depression, I had the support from my older sister and husband to keep moving forward. I decided to continue my education. When I enrolled at YouthBuild. I received so much support from the teachers and staff. I am so inspired by the program helping young adults. I will be attending Valley College to receive my Associate of Arts Degree in Business Administration and in the future start a nonprofit organization to help my community.
Henry Ceja was born in Los Angeles California. His family moved to Fresno California when he was about 2 years old. His parents were both farm workers and worked in the Central Valley's agricultural fields. Henry grew up in the west Fresno area. As he grew up he began using drugs as a teen and was quickly addicted. He stopped going to school and was incarcerated many times. Now Henry is sober and has returned to school to further his education and in hopes to get a better paying job. He has achieved his goal of earning his highschool diploma. Now he has his mind set on going to college to obtain a business degree.
I was raised by a single mother, alongside my two younger siblings in the Antelope Valley. I was originally born in Sylmar, California but raised in Michoacán, Mexico in the earlier stages of my life. My family and I moved back to the states to a small predominantly white town at the time, Palmdale, California. I went to three different schools for first grade and as a result I was held back a grade. I endured lots of bullying and struggled socially and academically throughout school. I became pregnant at the beginning of sophomore year and immediately dropped out. I did try continuation school, which I could not balance on my own with a newborn. I felt so lost for so long, that was until I walked into AV Youthbuild and was introduced to the staff. I felt an immediate sense of understanding and I felt heard and seen. I felt like my future mattered and I had a support system now that would help me achieve my goal. Unfortunately, LIFE happens and I had to drop out again and get a job to support my family. It took longer than expected but I came back to AV Youthbuild in 2021 and this time I was determined to finish all the way through! NO EXCUSES! With the guidance from the staff and support from my family, I achieved it! I am a High School Graduate class of 2022! One of my biggest accomplishments will be not only graduating, but showing my son that you can achieve anything when you give it your all, no matter how old you are to never give up on something you truly want. I am now currently enrolled at Antelope Valley College and will major in Business Marketing. Life comes at us in waves, w e can't predict or control those waves, but we can learn to SWIM!
My name is Rehman and I am 18 years old. I graduated from John Muir charter school site in Sacramento in June 2022 I am hardworking and love to learn new things since being at SRCC has taught me a lot of new skills and lessons that I plan on forward using to my advantage as I continue to college. I’ve been knocked down many times in the process of getting where I want to be, I’ve been knocked down from the very top to the complete lowest. Every time I got knocked back down it made me bounce back even harder and teaches me a lesson every time. Without teacher and staff support at John Muir things would have been extremely difficult I can say for a fact. They have helped me along my journey and helped me get through tough obstacles in my path I will forever be great full for all the kind hearted people that have helped me along my journey.
My name is Rosa Nieto. I am 24 years old and I was raised in North Hollywood some days, and other days I was anywhere you can think of. I struggled with addiction for a long time, but finally I got clean and met my wonderful husband and ever since my life has changed for the better. One of my main goals was to graduate high school, which I did. I give all the credit to God! In fall 2022 I will be starting my classes in college and I am super grateful and excited that I have made it this far. I want to major in psychology and help those in need through my personal experiences and education!
Samuel Reynolds Jr.
My name is Samuel, I'm 24 on my own in Los Angeles, I dedicated myself to getting my high school diploma and I've set a good example to show my family that education is important in life! Despite attending different schools and encountering many obstacles, I was able to accomplish my goal of graduating! I am very excited for this new chapter in my life and I plan to complete 2 years of college to obtain my associates degree in Sociology graduating from Los Angeles Pierce College.
My name is Shyanne Seyler. I am 21 years old with a 2 year old baby girl. I am from Hollister, California but grew here in Fresno, California since the age of three months. I got pregnant at 18 years old and dropped out of school. While attending Youthbuild Charter School of California my first goal was to graduate high school and I did with the help of my family and of course with the help from Youthbuild Charter School teachers and staff. My second goal is to now finish and graduate college positive and strong which will lead to many more goals that I have planned for myself and family.