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Journey To Graduation: Paying it Forward


2024 Winston Churchill High School graduate, Caroline, did not have the easiest path to graduation. 

She started her journey at the high school as a student who was described as responsible, studious and had "the biggest heart of anyone you will ever meet.”

As Caroline crossed the stage this graduation season to receive her diploma, she could not help but reflect on the many obstacles she had to overcome, and the journey to get there. 

“It was a miracle that I made it to senior year. Looking at it overall, I think I really achieved a lot,” said Caroline.

Caroline struggled with her mental health during her first two years of high school which led to a change in her personality that became apparent to her teachers. 

“It concerned me to see such a drastic change in what I saw as this bright light of the student that was starting to dim,” said one of her teachers Wendy Franklin. 

In this journey to graduation story, Caroline shares how her school community and family rallied around her to receive the support she needed to flourish. She educated herself and turned to helping others as a major focus of her community involvement during her junior and senior years. 

“I want to inspire people to keep going and be an empathetic light in the face of a mental health system that is very broken,” said Caroline. 

Caroline plans to continue to pay it forward by majoring in clinical psychology to become a therapist, psychologist or social worker.