It wasn’t long ago that we shared Kyare’s college essay, a piece in which he shared the role that Reach played in his maturation. So, consider this Part II.
After a writing session with support from Reach staff, Kyare felt that he had finished his personal statement. We invited him into the office to share it with the entire team. Though some in the office barely knew him, most were left fighting back tears. This work can be difficult. Kyare’s story reminds us why we work so hard.
Like proud parents, it’s hard for us to imagine why a college wouldn’t accept Kyare, but the competitiveness of the admissions process is real. He did not enter high school as a strong student, but he showed tremendous growth over his four years at Eastern. Who could not be inspired by his incredible improvement and his extraordinary commitment to his community?
We do know, however, that our hopes and beliefs cannot guarantee Kyare admission to college. So, when he sent in his applications, we all waited.
Kyare applied to a number of schools, but he always talked about two – American and Morehouse. Weeks passed and the decision date approached. He got into his first college, but his response was muted. It wasn’t one of the schools he really wanted to attend.
Then, on a Tuesday morning, my phone buzzed to alert me to a text message:
“Mr. Mark, guess what?”
I responded immediately with, “What?!”
And then, of course, minutes passed without a response. The longest minutes ever.
Then: “I got into Morehouse.”
My vision got a bit blurry. I’ll admit it. In a world that sometimes focuses on stats and ignores stories, Kyare got into Morehouse. In a world where college can change families, Kyare got into Morehouse. In a world in which fairness doesn’t always win, Kyare got into Morehouse.
Pride doesn’t begin to explain our feelings. Kyare is why we do this.
We are all still waiting to hear about the financial aid available. And, for Kyare, that will play a significant role in determining whether he will be able to attend his dream school. But, no matter what happens, no one will ever be able to take away from Kyare the fact that he got into Morehouse.