When Jessica was researching colleges to attend when she was at Jones College Prep, she knew that the $40,000 a year tuition would be too much of a financial burden to her parents. When she realized she qualified for the Star Scholarship, those problems seemed to be solved. She did, however, feel a new kind of pressure.

“I always try to do my best, but it reminded me that I had a responsibility to do the best I can – it was incredible opportunity and I didn’t want to let myself down or the people who gave me the scholarship. It reminded me to be the best student I could be.”

Covering tuition and books, and providing transfer opportunities and scholarships via Star partnerships, the Star Scholarship will allow Jessica to leave City Colleges in May 2018 with her associate degree and no debt before she moves on to a four-year college.

With the end goal of becoming a lawyer, Jessica knows the quality of her education at Harold Washington College has helped to set her on a path of success, and she made sure to use all the resources she needed. “Don’t be afraid to reach out – that was a really great lesson I learned here. Ellen Goldberg in the Transfer Center always encouraged me to find the resources available and use them.”

Jessica was also involved on campus, joining the Student Government Association, Phi Theta Kappa honor society, the Creative Writing Club, the Organization of Latin American Students, the Feminist Empowerment Club, and she even helped start the Model UN.

So far, she’s been accepted to the University of Michigan with a substantial amount of scholarships, and is still waiting to hear back from a few more schools.

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