My name is Pauline Muturi and I am a fourth year undergraduate student at The Florida State University with big dreams of leaving a positive and sustainable change in this world. Growing up in a traditionally East African household my parents always expressed the importance of excelling in school and showing gratitude for everything we had. Raising four kids with a little under $50,000 a year was extremely difficult for my parents, but never impossible. Coming to this country nineteen years ago required much risk and sacrifice, but the reward was greater than my struggle. My family had big hopes for a better life and brighter future and to this day I can say we are living the American dream. Not a day goes by that I am reminded of my parent’s long walks to school or their faintly lit rooms aided by candles. Despite my parents struggle, my father expressed a very important value that even today continues to influence my life; it is the value of perseverance. This principle is way bigger than just being persistent, it is about continuing on despite difficult obstacles. Life gets hard at times and we often feel defeated, however there is always something to gain in the midst of your storm. Today I give thanks to America for drastically changing my life for the better. Coming from a financially disadvantaged background, I realized that no educational barrier would keep me from achieving my dreams of receiving a degree and attending medical school. By creating this fund, I have the opportunity to obtain a $10,000 scholarship from GoFundMe.com (the only other qualifier being that ten unique individuals must make a donation to my fund in any amount).
During my matriculation at Florida State, I did not realize the debilitating obstacles that would arise during my time here. As a DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) student, I do not qualify for financial aid and as a result I have worked two jobs in order to pay for tuition. It has been an extremely difficult and overwhelming process, but in spite of it all I have maintained a 3.56 GPA. I want to thank my institution and every single individual who has invested their time in me. There were moments where I was almost kicked out of school because of my inability to pay tuition on time. It almost brings tears to my eyes because the few individuals who know my story, cared so much to keep me in school, despite the tremendous obstacles that come my way. This opportunity means so much to me because I know this education of mine is what separates me from the life of poverty my family experiences. Never in a million years would I have imagined being the first in all of my generations to achieve this great dream. With this story, I have spent the past four years mentoring and tutoring high school students about the importance of receiving higher education. After mentoring these students at a pre collegiate level, I have learned the importance of receiving support and encouragement, especially in a time of need. A lot of my students lacked motivation and resources to reach their full potential, however I became a living testimony, that through hard work in school, excellence is achievable.
If given the privilege to receive this scholarship, I hope to become a testimony to others that the circumstances of your birth does not dictate your destiny. I have a great vision of graduating and going to medical school and this scholarship will take away a lot of stress I am currently experiencing. My family has encountered great poverty and lack of medical resources, which has inspired me to become a physician to ultimately give back to my community. This degree is not only for me, but it belongs to all people of goodwill, particularly to my parents for their persistent encouragement to never to give up despite the many financial obstacles I have personally encountered. I give thanks to my country America, a country that gave me so much during my time of need, by providing an enabling environment to pursue my studies.
Please if you find it in your heart to donate even $5.00 I would be eternally grateful #GFMScholarship.
- Mary Jo Brough
- Roger Maki-Schramm
- The GoFundMe Team
- Deborah Maina
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