“I am the first in my family to go to college. It is mind-blowing. I had to create my own path and it allowed me to shape myself and my future, compared to being led by somebody else.
My immediate plan is to study health science at Santa Fe College, with the thought of transferring later. I‘ve seen a lot of people choose colleges far away from home and then come back before graduating. I wanted to stay local, be close to family, work here, get my foundation set and increase my chance for success.
Getting to this moment has not been easy, the biggest obstacle has been myself. Before starting 11th grade, I was not thinking to the future, I was acting like a child, but then I realized I can still be a kid at heart while also preparing myself for what lies ahead. I was interested in proving to myself that I am a leader in my community and school, so at the beginning of my senior year I ran for student government, and I’ve had the privilege of representing the Eastside High School Class of 2021 as the Senior Class President.
I didn’t get here alone, I found mentors along the way. One of my biggest mentors has been Marilyn Youngquist. She was my 9th grade math teacher at EHS. She is like a mother to me, she helped develop my social and leadership skills all throughout high school and I am truly thankful for her.
I start college classes Summer B, just a few weeks away. I’ve already applied for the My Brother’s Keeper program and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to apply to become a student ambassador or get involved in student government at the collegiate level.
For now, I’ve kind of just been hanging out, watching a lot of anime, and playing around, I know these are some of my last moments as a kid. I hope to always keep a child-like sense of wonder, because imagination and possibility is what keeps you going through tough times.”
Eric Williams, future SF student
Watch Eric’s graduation speech for EHS. Eastside High School Graduation 2021