Upward Bound Alum Reflects on USF Decision

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My name is Gabriel Junior Vancea and I currently tutor high school students in USF’s Upward Bound program.

Before I go any further I would like to give a brief introduction of myself. I originally finished high school in San Diego, applied to USF, got accepted, and moved to San Francisco. All throughout high school I was part of the TRIO Upward Bound program. I spent 3 summers at USD Upward Bound, where I grew, learn, and matured.

I see the TRIO Upward Bound program as a blessing to all students. The program made me a more aware individual. My family and I have been dealing with financial hardships since we first emigrated to America roughly four years ago, and I had to get a job to support my family. Sometimes I even had to work two jobs. With the help of the TRIO Upward Bound Program, I never gave up on myself and on my education even though I was working twice and sometimes three time as much as I studied. I always kept my grades up, however, because the program showed me that education is precious to each individual’s life.

Now, I am currently enrolled at USF and I am expecting to graduate in May 2014 with a double major in Finance and Business Marketing. I began working for the USF Upward Bound program with the desire to help others and change someone else’s life, just the way USD’s Upward Bound changed my life. I am aware of how important it is to have someone to support you all throughout school and life. I firmly believe that the Upward Bound program not only helps students get into college, it actually changes lives. The only reason why I am here as a USF Student is because of the support the Upward Bound program gave me.

I don’t consider it diplomatically or morally right for USF to get rid of the Upward Bound Program. I find it very immature and superficial. I had my chance to succeed and I actually did; I had people who believed in me and I had the support to back me up.. Now that I hear that USF is to stop the Upward Bound program, I am extremely disappointed. I came to college because of the program, and now my goal is to see others go to college and succeed the in same way I did and beyond. And I firmly believe that Upward Bound can offer that chance to the students. The program impacted my life, and it will change other people’s lives as long as USF will keep the program.
The program may not be the most profitable for the university, but it sure is the most helpful and life changing program that I have ever experienced. I am willing to do everything that it takes to keep the program going.

Gabriel Vancea is a freshman finance and  business marketing double major.

Editor-in-Chief: Heather Spellacy

Chief Copy-Editor: Natalie Cappetta

Opinion Editor: Vicente Patino

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