To read of this story causes several emotions and thoughts to arise within me.
One, is of sorrow and pity.
Another, is of relief that the community pitched in to assist.
Another is of joy that she is on a trajectory for success.
Yet another is of frustration that these scenarios exist… and do so largely without others’ knowledge.
Even another is of a tinge of anger, for the injustice.
While another is of pride for her resolute attitude and dogged determination.
On the whole, however, it is a “happy ending” to an otherwise difficult, even horrifically tragic story. And it is precisely those kind of success stories we so love to hear. The stories of those whom have overcome adversity – to have excelled despite the most severe adversity, even affliction – is the type of success story, the proverbial Horatio Alger story, that we Americans and all people, love to hear.
From scrubbing floors to Ivy League: Homeless student to go to dream college
updated 9:14 AM EDT, Fri June 8, 2012
Lawndale, North Carolina (CNN) — It’s before sunrise, and the janitor at Burns High School has already been down the length of a hallway, cleaning and sweeping classrooms before the day begins.
This particular janitor is painstakingly methodical, even as she administers a mental quiz on an upcoming test. Her name is Dawn Loggins, a straight-A senior at the very school she cleans.
On this day, she maneuvers a long-handled push broom between rows of desks. She stops to pick up a hardened, chewed piece of gum. “This annoys me, because there’s a trash can right here,” she says.
The worst, she says, is snuff cans in urinals. “It’s just rude and pointless.”
With her long, straight dark blonde hair and black-rimmed glasses, Dawn looks a bit like Avril Lavigne. But her life is a far cry from that of a privileged pop star.
She was homeless at the start of the school year, abandoned by her drug-abusing parents. The teachers and others in town pitched in — donating clothes and providing medical and dental care. She got the janitorial job through a school workforce assistance program.
She’s grateful for the work. But it’s where she’s going next, beyond the walls of Burns, that excites her most. She applied to four colleges within North Carolina and one dream university. She’ll graduate soon before heading off, leaving her dust pan behind.
Dawn Loggins is working as a janitor to make ends meet.
For now, there’s Read the rest of this entry »