Draft's Picks

Pedro G. - "The Blind Side" Miami

In the movie The Blind Side, Michael Oher was a child that seemed destined to fail like everyone else that came from his world. But, unlike others, he was able to overcome his weaknesses in order to become a successful man. That is a character trait that I also possess, the ability to overcome obstacles.

I have always been speech impaired. When I was three years old, my mom took me to a clinic to get tested. The test showed that although 1 had a superior intellect befitting a four year and 1 month old, my auditory skills were of a 24-month child. My mom and relatives told me that I relied on hand motions to communicate more than my speech. When I tried to talk, I would get frustrated when I could not pronounce a word correctly. This caused my mother to put me into school earlier than other children so I could have a speech therapist to help me learn to speak correctly. As I grew older I was put into an intellectually gifted program but still had trouble with words. This made making friends very hard for me, and teachers had to be told of my problem so they didn't think that I was not smart enough to do the work. This contributed to a self- esteem issue and made me feel like I was tied down each time I spoke. People always seem very surprised to learn that I take very advanced classes, "I never would have guessed," one person said to me, but during high school realized how I shouldn't allow this to rule my life. This is where I finally decided to use my strength to overcome this obstacle. It took a while but I can now pronounce many words that I wouldn't have even attempted during my middle school years. I find it easier to ask people to pronounce the word for me. Now I am a PA announcer for the school and my Silver Knight community service project is based on recording books for children who can't read. This disability has helped by making me be non-judgmental of others with special needs. I consider myself like Michael Oher as someone that confronted a weakness that could academically and socially defeat you, and used my strengths to overcome it to become a better student, person and friend.