When people set goals in life, they become more motivated and hardworking to achieve the goals that they set. I have multiple goals that need to be achieved. As a high school student, my short term goals are to graduate high school with a strong GPA and to apply to as many scholarships as I can to help me pay for college. Huge happiness runs through my body when I think about how sturdy my future is going to be. I am on a very perfect path of my life and I couldn’t be anymore proud of myself so far. I am determined to put effort into my education and make all the dreams that I have come to reality. Besides the short term goals mentioned above, my long term goals are to become an Actuary, connect with more people, give back to my community, make my parents proud, and be as successful as I can be in life. Actuarial Science has always been what I wanted to do because of how much math it involves. I love everything that has to do with math and it’s my strongest subject so, I have always wanted to do something that involves a lot of mathematics. Actuarial Science is one of the most math based fields out there. I am determined to get my Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree in Actuarial Science and I know I can get it as long as I dedicate myself to work hard, stay persistant, and never get distracted by anything else in this world. I have heard many people say that you have to work extra hard and it’s not easy, but nothing is easy in life. We have to work for everything we end up getting if we want to say that it’s ours. Regardless of what major I choose, I will still be working hard because at the end of the day, success comes by putting in effort and I choose to be a successful and an independent young woman than a young woman who doesn’t have anything going for herself. Moreover, my parents’ emotional support has been everything to me. Both my parents are supportive of what I do even though they don’t know how to help me with my education. My mom didn’t go to college because she didn’t want to serve in the military since every student who wants to go to college has to serve in the military in Eritrea. My mom was a smart kid, but with the horrible Eritrea’s circumstances, she ended up not furthering her education. My dad on the other side, did serve in the military and did go to college in Eritrea, but his degree doesn’t work in the United States. My parents left everything such as family members, friends they grew up with, a place they considered home, and their culture behind so I can get a better education. That just goes to show how education is so valuable in my household. Setting goals in life gives you a long-term vision of your future. Sometimes, achieving those goals can seem difficult, but I have more than enough motivation to achieve all my goals. Giving back to my community has always been my favorite thing to do. Giving back just makes me feel good about myself. I can be in the worst mood, but as soon as I volunteer, my mood just changes to something better. Interacting with different people and seeing worse problems than what you are going through, makes you appreciate your life more. Volunteering is an important factor when you want to change something in your community. I have spent a lot of time volunteering and giving back to my people since my freshman year of high school. I have volunteered in so many places such as People’s City Mission, Elliott Elementary School, Boo At The Zoo, The ‘F’ Street Community Center, Asian Center, Public Cleaning, Bright Lights, etc. Through volunteering, I’ve met different kinds of people, gained experiences, developed skills that I would’ve not developed from school, and had a lot of fun. I learned from people who went through so many obstacles and how they were able to break through and was inspired by them. I was able to make a difference in people’s lives by giving two hours of my day and that makes me happy. I’ve always wanted to support the less fortunate people and after I started to do so, it made me even more passionate about engaging in my community than I’ve ever been. I have so many more plans about giving back to my community. I am determined on creating charities/organizations in the future to help people financially. I also plan on helping people who are in the hoods, in an unstable household, or in a situation that they have a hard time to be successful in school. I want to create awareness of how important education is, how education can change a person’s life to something better, and how it should be valued in all households. Besides, I don’t only plan to do that here, but back in Eritrea as well. There are so many people struggling like I was out there and I want to help them because I don’t want them to feel the same way I did when I didn’t have anyone to help me back then. I came off of nothing and I am thankful to be here with the support of the people who care about me and I plan to be that person for others as well. Engaging in my community makes me a better person who doesn’t take anything for granted. I am determined to make our world a better place for all of us and for the upcoming generations. Moving to a new country isn’t exactly as moving down the street. Picking up your life and mvoing abraod can expose you to experinces and opportunities that would never have been achievable if you stayed put, but at the same time, it can be an obstacle. My family and I moved to the United states in June 2013. Everything was just hard whther it was the culture shock or language barrier, but thinking about how I grew from those experiences is more important to think about than what Ia actually went through. When I first arrived to the US, the culture shock I experienced caused great waves of homesickess and one of them being language barriers. In 2013, I didn’t know any English so, it was difficult to connect with others. When I think about the first dat of school, walking in a classroom filled with so many new faces, I remember being intimitated. Even if I knew a luttle bit of Englush, I didn’t have the confidence that I have now to speak up and be myself around people because I was scared of being judged by other. Through all those obstacles, I was able to learn and grow both physically and emotionally. WHen I first moved, I was thrown into brand new situations and setting that were intiimidating and scary at first, but it was the best wat to grow as an individual. I am a different person because of those experiences and I am happy of who I am today than I was then. I learned to be thankful to God and my family because they were the only ones there for me when I needed them. An obstacles is not an obstacles if you don’t let it be an obstaces. The way I overcome my obstacles is by focusing on why my family and I decided to move to the US. An obstacle might be terrfiying, but it’s all worth it when you get through it. A leader doesn’t need to be a manager nor a senior instead, a leader is a person who empowers others who are around. Leading others might not be easy, but it’s one of the main reasons as to why a person grows mentally. Great leaders gain confidence, motivation, and positivity from leadership. I have been a leader of a few things so far in my life such as being the President of the Eritrean Youth In Lincoln, leader of Eritrean Dancers, as well as the captain of my soccer team at Lincoln HIgh School. As a president of the Eritrean Youth In Lincoln and leader of Eritrean Dancers, my duty is to plan on how we can improve our community, help our people, raise money, plan events, and choreograph. Besides, as a captain of my soccer team at Lincoln High School, my job was to push the girls to work harder, teach them the skills that they lack, teach them to be better team players, and how to be leaders as well. Another leadership duty that I do is tutor my younger sister at home. I always help her with homeworks. On top of that, Upward Bound (college-prep program) has been one of the most influential programs in my life. They have one of the most magnificent leadership programs for their students. An example of that would be, peer tutoring. I have tutored my peers for a year now and it has helped me become a better mentor and more productive person. As a leader, I improved my self-esteem, mindset, and creativity. Achieving something you have worked so hard for is one of the best feelings in the world. Achievements show us that we are on the right path to success. Something I worked so hard to achieve was learning English. Like I mentioned above, I was born in Eritrea. I moved to the United States in June 2013 with my family when I was thirteen years old. I came with a little bit of English, but it wasn’t enough for me to communicate with others or even be successful in my classes. Lincoln Public Schools put me in English Language Learners (ELL) level 2. Most people find it hard to believe when I say that I learned English in a year and went through all the ELL levels that quick, but I did. By the end of the school year, I was able to understand what my teacher was saying and communicate with people around me. However, I worked hard for that. I was always reading books, writing, watching YouTube videos, watching movies in English, and trying to communicate in English with everyone around me. It was very complicated, but I put my all into it. I was so focused into learning English because I realized that I wouldn’t be able to do anything as far as pursuing my dreams if I didn’t learn English. People automatically just think “Oh she is just good with languages,” but what they don’t understand is that, I worked day and night to learn it. That experience showed me the outcomes of hard work and how it actually pays off at the end.