My name is Kaprice Watkins and I am a product of the Milwaukee Choice Program. However, I did not use this voucher my entire childhood. As a child I attended Morris Marshall Elementary School and my experience there was one that made a significant impact on my life.
During my time at this school I felt lost and was easily persuaded to be a part of things I should not have been doing. I found myself doing things like skipping class and missing more assignments because I was trying to keep up with a crowd I did not belong in.
My actions were a part of the reason I was failing, but a big part of what I was able to do was due to the lack of structure in my school. Everything was so unorganized and there was no one ever directing me to do anything other than what I was already doing. The teachers seemed to care little and did little to keep us engaged in the content being taught.
“When you grow up in poverty you tend to see people settling for their circumstances and not going out to work and be successful. Hope made me see that I did not have to be a product of my environment.”
I kept this behavior up and before I knew it, I was in the 8th grade with nothing to show for the time I had spent fooling around. When I graduated the 8th grade, I had a grade point average of a 1.6. I did not realize the affects that would have on me until after I graduated and had to find a high school to go to.
I decided to go to Hope Christian High School on the Milwaukee Choice voucher. When I got there, my whole outlook on school changed drastically. Before I came to Hope, I looked at school as a choice; the choice to go to class, the choice to do my work, and the choice to get good grades. When I got to Hope, they took those choices away from me and instead gave me the mentality that failure was not an option.
Where I come from no one thought of being anything more than average. When you grow up in poverty you tend to see people settling for their circumstances and not going out to work and be successful. Hope made me see that I did not have to be a product of my environment. Being on the choice voucher and being able to attend Hope Christian High School helped me defy the odds to become successful.
I am now a senior in college majoring in human resources management and minoring in economics. I am also an intern at Enterprise rentals as a sales management intern. My future looks bright and I have the Milwaukee Choice Program to thank for that.