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I’ve been in Roseland since the 90s. I went to Chicago International Charter School, and through honors classes I got to visit different sister schools across the world. I’ve been to Jamaica, Africa, and Beijing. I have friends all over the world. The experience broadened my horizons, and I think people need a lot more of this. When you are in a box for so long, that’s all you tend to know and see, and you start to think that’s all there is in the world.

If you live in a box, you might start to see what’s bad only. But it doesn’t have to be like that. I seek good every day.

Every day, I wake up trying to be closer to a better version of myself — the me I aspire to be, that I’m already in the process of becoming becoming. I want to see love, peace, and happiness in the world, so I wake up every day to be love, peace and happiness, and spread that throughout everyone I meet. I go around with smiles, happiness, dancing, singing to people. And then they smile and dance because it’s infectious. Every day, I wake up. Who doesn’t want to wake up smiling and laughing every day, enjoying life?