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Not Making the Same Mistake My Brothers Made

By Linda E., Casper, Wyoming

I was the last of 6 kids and I was about to make the same mistake that my 3 older brothers had made - I was going to quit. I thought I knew everything at 16. Man, was I so wrong! I had just flunked my sophomore year and was embarrassed about it. I didn't want to graduate with kids I didn't know.

I told my mother I was going to quit. She began to cry and asked me why, and how did she fail as a parent? I felt horrible! I was only thinking of myself. When I saw how upset it made her, I told her I wouldn't quit just for her.

My father heard about my thoughts and offered my brother and me a deal we couldn't resist. He told us if we graduated on the honor roll, he would buy us any car we wanted for a graduation present. Well, he lied. He didn't buy that car for me. He told me now you have a diploma, so get out there and get a job and buy it yourself. It was a trick, but at least I graduated.

I am now attending University of Wyoming getting my BA in art education. So, yes, I'm going to be a teacher and I don't regret my decision to stay in school. Walking across the stage was one of my proudest moments. And I can't wait to walk across the stage in May 2009. I did this diploma for me and I'm very proud of myself.