This fifth story in a series about recent high school graduates from our partner community, the Sagrada Familia children’s home in Peru, is about Alexander Ramos. He’s grateful for the chance to go to college, and doesn’t complain about the difficulties life has presented him – choosing to prepare himself to contribute to society using his talents and intellect.
Alexander, you were an older student when you arrived at Sagrada Familia last year. What brought you to the community?
I liked what I heard about this place, so I came here with my cousin because a friend of us told us that this home was a big family. My home is in the San Martín region, the province of Tocache and the district of Nuevo Progreso.
One of my dreams was to go to college, to set foot on a college campus. I always wondered how this could be possible. I always worried about what I would do after graduating high school. When I was a sophomore, I wanted to be a pilot. But I couldn’t do it because of lack of resources. But here there were scholarships available for one particular college. So I decided I would take advantage of the opportunity to study something at that college, and finish this major. Hopefully later I can study what I like.
So what was difficult for me suddenly became feasible. For me this was the best opportunity I’ve had in my life. So I started studying really hard and giving my best. Once I was in college it was a challenge for me academically. Many times I had to stay up all night studying. My first semester was really tough for me.
“To me college has always been something higher. It’s like I must give everything I have… My goal is not to be a burden to this world, but rather someone that contributes to this world.”Alexander Ramos
I thank teacher Miguel a lot for this chance. He told us, “you have the opportunity to go to this college and study something there; it’s up to you if you want to take advantage of this opportunity or not.” So I thought about it and realized that it was a great chance for me. So I did my best to go to this school and I finally got in. But it was all thanks to teacher Miguel. He always thinks about us, how we are going to grow. He wants us to be like him or better than him. This is what I like about him. I’m always learning from him.
How has Sagrada Familia helped you work toward your goals?
The good thing here is that we have a schedule. When we wake up, we have to do our chores, then we have lunch, then we have other special assignments that we have to do. After that we have free time to study and do the things we like. So I really like the structure because it helps me learn a little bit more. They are preparing me for the time I have to leave and face other challenges on my own, which will be a more difficult time.
Quite often we have conflicts between those wanting to talk and others wanting to study at the dorm. I guess there won’t really be a time where everyone will be quiet. This can be annoying at times. So what I’ve done is change my schedule. I had to look for the best time during the day to study in silence and be able to really learn. Now that I finished my first semester in college, I like using my free time to review what I learned at school.
“I always worried about what I would do after graduating high school. But then I saw that teacher Miguel worried about us and presented us with an opportunity. So what was difficult for me suddenly became feasible. For me this was the best opportunity I’ve had in my life.”Alexander Ramos
What would you like to add about your hopes for the future?
To me, college has always been something higher. It’s like I must give everything I have. Because this opportunity is not there for most people. So many kids here want to go to college but they can’t because of lack or resources and many other issues. I must face this challenge that is preparing me for even greater challenges later in life, things that I don’t know. And through this experience of learning day-by-day, I’m preparing to be someone better in life. My goal is not to be a burden to this world, but rather someone that contributes to this world.
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