Draft's Picks

Tiauna Y. - "The Blind Side" Buffalo, N.Y.

Alcohol or family were my father's choices.  I bet you are wondering which one he chose. A wife, six daughters, and only one son or the alcohol he craved?  A degree in science, a great paying job, and a happy family is what he lost!

My mother raised us all, giving each one of us the ability, strength, guidance, and courage to
succeed. She was always pushing forward to supply us with everything we needed. I am determined to attend college to major in engineering. No matter what obstacles I shall encounter, I am ready to be the best I can be and not only reach for, but to achieve all of my dreams. My mother inspires me; she made me who I am today, a leader, a scholar athlete, a role model, a friend, and a strong young African American woman. I will reach my goals and make my mother proud, no matter how hard I have to work.

One experience stands out in my mind. I remember in late November last year my mother was laid off from her job. During that time, there was a low income coming into our house. My mother looked happy, but deep inside we all could feel the pain. We knew she was sad, because Christmas was near and there were not any gifts under the tree. She felt like there was nothing she could do, but on Christmas morning my three older sisters surprised her with something special. While my two sisters, brother, my mom, and I were sleeping, they wrapped many gifts and put them under the tree, and each one of us had a gift that read "From Mommy and Santa Claus." She cried and gave my three oldest sisters a hug and said, "Thank You. I love you all and god blessed me with some amazing children." My younger brother and sister were so happy opening up their gifts saying, "Santa came, Santa came." Although my mom did not have the money to get us gifts for Christmas, my sisters did all the shopping for her, proving the lesson my mom taught me it is better to give then to receive.

This taught me that many problems may arise in life, but I should never give up. Growing up in a family of seven children and a single mother, we have been through so many trails, and there are many problems we have had to overcome. The inspiration and confidence my mother gives and will continue to give, keeps me on the right path and also believing that I can do whatever I put my mind to, no matter how big or small.

After high school I plan to play college basketball and volleyball. It is my senior year and I am working hard to receive a scholarship in sports and academics.  My grade point average is an 85.48 overall. I am ranked ninth out of our senior class of 2010. I am in National Honor Society at my school and have received many awards in sports and academics, which is why I consider myself a Scholar Athlete. I am the Vice President of our senior class and I am also apart of the Inter-High Student Council. I have been involved in a lot of things throughout my high school years, but still I have found time to give my best at them all. Although my father is not here while my family and I struggle to pay bills, put clothes on our backs, and food on our table, I can proudly say we made it!!