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Sunday, April 14, 2024

Homeless lady gets chance to prove herself, graduates US university with good grades

A determined homeless lady, Felicitas Reyes has fought her way to graduate from the University of South Carolina, the United States despite facing the challenges of being homeless and poor.

Felicitas Reyes who grew up in different foster care homes with her siblings defied the odds to finally graduate from university. She said she remembered growing up in Georgia where her Mexican immigrant father had come to look for construction work and not being too present in her life.

She said her mother turned to drugs and alcohol to cope and by the time she turned 6, she had already spent a year in foster care. “I can’t even remember how many schools I attended. We were always moving because of evictions,” she recalls.

Felicitas mentioned that they bounced around between homeless shelters and cheap motels before social workers stepped in and placed her and her siblings in a group home before they were eventually sent to live with various foster parents.

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Despite the challenges, she said her mother always put education in front of everything else making them realize that school was her only way to escape the problems. She noted that by ninth grade she was accepted into a program that allowed her to attend a top-ranked public high school in Amherst, Massachusetts with the help of her teachers.

She credits her older sister Vanessa Reyes, who also attended the University of South Carolina six years earlier, describing her as the role model who allowed her to believe that she could one day go to college.

Felicitas said after she got enrolled in the university, she faced financial challenges adding that the stress of having no money and the uncertainty of where she would live during summer and winter breaks sent her into a deep depression but was able to pull through with scholarships and grants. 

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Felicitas graduated from the university with a 3.8 grade point average and a degree in American studies. She mentioned that she has a burning desire to become an advocate for at-risk and marginalized youth.

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