I wasn't known for much when I was growing up. However, starting at nine years old, I did always make one thing clear about myself any time I met someone new: I would move to Boston to get an excellent education, and I would finally thrive. Unfortunately, dreams almost always seem impossible to achieve when your family has a meager income, making Boston sound like a fairytale. Opportunities are far less common for lower-class families, and the children are often the ones who go completely unnoticed. I was no exception. Luckily, College Dreams fills a giant hole in that system, making the ever-inspiring founders, Tom and Judie Drummond, a couple of heroes of mine.
I’m an original dreamer, and an original Dream$aver, having been a part of the program since the 7th grade (one year after the organization was founded) and starting a Dream$avers account the very first year it was offered. I used these resources to the best of my abilities, but if anyone had asked me in the 7th grade if I thought I would be working for a school—especially one like MIT—by age 26, I might have just smirked in derision. What kind of small-town girl makes it clear across the country for that kind of success?
I worked hard, I failed and started over, I learned from my mistakes, and I kept dreaming, thanks, in a large part, to the emotional support from the College Dreams staff, but also to the I.D.A Program (called Dream$avers when I took advantage of it). The best part is that I don’t intend on stopping at MIT. Just because I reached my dreams doesn’t mean I can’t, or shouldn’t, reach any further. Thanks to the galvanizing efforts of my College Dreams counselors, I became a lifelong dreamer.