Monday, February 9, 2009

Student Spotlight: Ashaunti Roby

Newberry Academy 8th grader Ashaunti Roby is a stellar student; just look at her most recent report card. On it you’ll find all A’s and just 2 B’s. Her school is a math and science academy, which is good for her because math and science are her two best subjects. For Ashaunti, academic excellence isn’t enough. She shows her leadership through involvement in her school’s student council where she represents the entire student body as Vice President. This means that she and the President run all the meetings and determine what activities and projects the council takes on. For instance, their most recent project was coordinating a food and supply drive for soldiers in the Middle-East.

Ashaunti is committed to speaking out and helping to be the change that Obama spoke so often about during the recent election. She recently wrote an essay as part of our I Have a Dream… contest about her hopes and dreams for her community in the coming years. In it, she lamented the number of young “wanna-be gangsters” growing up in her community without a place for them outside of gang life. She put forth the solution of greatly expanding after-school programs to keep these at-risk kids off the streets and in productive activities that will help give them the drive to succeed. She also discussed the rising unemployment and how the government doesn’t adequately provide for ex-cons after they do their time and want to re-enter society. She argues that most ex-offenders simply want the opportunity to pay off bills, put food on the table and clothe their children but are denied even this opportunity because of the extraordinary hurdles that society puts between them and decent jobs. Read the rest of her essay on the Cabrini Connections website.

When not studying, convening student council meetings or at Cabrini Connections, Ashaunti loves listening to music. Some of her favorites are Ne-Yo, Beyoncé and of course, her namesake Ashanti.

Ashaunti and her mentor, Sarah Randag, have been together for 2 years now and have developed a strong mentoring relationship. They often get together outside of tutoring to chat, go out for dinner or even see a play. They work together to ensure Ashaunti stays on the right track to accomplish her long term goal of becoming an English or Math Professor. Since Sarah and Ashaunti are so consistent in logging their progress with SVHATS, we’re confident that we’ll be able to track her progress each week as she continues her quest to become Professor Roby. Congratulations Ashaunti!

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