“…she told me what it is to be a woman, to hold your own.”
From LaShonda Sullivan Corliss High School

[Starts by playing a music clip that includes the line, “They ask me what I do and who I do it for…] and she jumps in and says Nancy… Nancy… I’m just having a little fun, but… a lot of people ask me who I do it for, like who is my inspiration. And it’s my grandma Nancy. Nancy made me who I am today because of the simple fact that she was a very significant person in my life.

When she died, I lost a best friend. It was tragic and I learned from that. I became, I will not lie, I became rebellious. I didn’t want to listen to what nobody had to say because honestly, it didn’t matter. But I remember just having them conversations with my granny and she would tell me, like, don’t give up on your dreams, don’t give up on what you want to be in life. And don’t let situations like these affect you.

So I am still in school and I’m doing very good at that. And my grandma, I think about her from time to time, and I realize that she has made me who I am, and that’s who I do it for, not only her, but also myself. So her death has impacted me tremendously and I thank God for the time we did have together, and I miss her so much that sometimes I just cry on my bed like a baby.

But that lady, Nancy, she was so strong, she was so independent, and she told me what it is to be a woman, to hold your own. And growing into a young lady now, I realize that. I am a woman. Wait, no let me change that. I am a young lady that has goals in life and I will never give it up because I promised my grandmother and also myself that. RIP Nancy.

Interview conducted in Chicago, IL.


scu_gatewaystem150x175 “I was kind of getting scared…what if my potential is not as high as theirs?”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “…you never know how it feels getting back up if you never fall down.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “I never wanted this to happen.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “… a whole lot of people in St. Louis haven't been to the Arch.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “… after that I felt worthless, and like a coward.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “Some teenagers my age are not like me for one big and important reason…”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “…it’s not all ice cream and cake.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “They just have to accept me for who I am.”
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