I Am Your Dividend: Orlando-Area Student Kalese Justice Tells Her Story
There was a time in my life when I didn't think college was an option for me.
For almost a year, my family and I were homeless, living in and out of our car. Living in the car at nights, I wouldn't want to sleep. I couldn't sleep. It was one of the hardest things that I have ever had to do. We couldn’t begin to imagine all the challenges that would come with being homeless. I will never forget the feeling.
Thanks to my UNCF Seminole Scholars Program Scholarship, I am currently in my second year at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida. Knowing what it's like to be homeless has driven me to major in social entrepreneurship—addressing social and economic issues with business-like approaches, so that I can be part of the solution.
After I receive my bachelor’s degree, I plan to go to graduate school to attain my MBA, and then to help teenagers regain self-sufficiency by opening a resource center and housing agency to help homeless teens—like I was. I want to be a part of the change, to provide homeless teens with a place that they can receive help and a place where they do not feel alone or judged. A place where they will have access to all the services needed to get back on the right track to succeed in life. I feel like this is my way to do good in the world.
I am where I am today because of the United Negro College Fund. Thanks to UNCF I was able to attend college and start my path to success. UNCF’s support has reassured me that I am not only the product of my past, but the hope of my future.