Many people aren’t proud of where they come from. Ashamed of their roots. Me, I’m a small town girl. Yeah, so my town doesn’t have such a great reputation but that doesn’t make me who I am. They say “It’s not where you’re from, it’s where you’re at”.

I consider myself the black sheep of the family. I’m the youngest of 8 and the only one born in the states. Growing up was tough. Being that I was treated different, I had no choice but to be a brat. My parents never failed to advise me with their wise words, and I thank them for that.

People don’t realize that your first teachers are the ones that impact your life the most. The first teachers would be the parents. Afterwards, your elementary, middle & highschool teachers. One day I’d like to see my kindergarten, 1st/2nd grade teachers: Mrs. Krum & Mrs. Wagner; and thank them for influencing me and inspiring me to be who I want to be, and be great at it. Mr. Reynolds, who taught me that each one of us are unique. Mrs. Ballard for teaching me that its ok to be different. Mrs. Revicki, who taught me that a little attitude doesn’t hurt. Mr. Branning taught me that in order to get respect I must give respect. Mrs. Taggart, Mrs. Caramore, Ms. Phillips, & Mr. Ross showed me the freedom to express myself and taught me how to in creative forms. Mr. Freedman, who taught me that our voice makes a difference; all we have to do is stand up & let it be heard. Mrs. Rhyne & Ms. Ford taught me to use my gift to its full potential. Mr. Knipsher for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to prove to myself that I am capable of achieving greatness if I put myself to it. Mr. Feignberg for teaching me to never stop in the middle, “the show must go on”. Mrs. Denman, who taught me that the only one standing in my way is myself. HUSTLE, HUSTLE! Coach Barbetta for pushing me to give it all I’ve got with a smile. Mrs. Stoudt for enlightening me… there’s more than meets the eye. Mrs. Forrest & Mr. Macias for being an essential part of my family and tying the loose ends.

Thank you to all the wonderful teachers I had growing up for telling me that its ok to aim high, telling me that I can achieve anything I put my mind to. For telling me that its ok to dream big. For encouraging me to achieve my deepest & heartfelt goals & dreams. I want to thank you for planting that seed of success. A special thank you to all my teachers at Livingston Manor Central School. Where they really prepare you for the future.

“Learners Today, Leaders Tomorrow”