Senior Stories: Alexis, Getting Back on Track

Alexis, a Class of 2018 graduate from Fairfax High School, considered dropping out of high school. His Students Run LA coach took the time to have a real conversation with him and helped Alexis come up with a plan to get back on track. He accomplished his goals and will be a first generation college student this fall. 

During my time at Fairfax High School, and after I realized that going to college was probably going to be unattainable, I began to give up. My grades began to reflect my state of mind and slowly my grades began to decline. No one seemed to be concerned, except for a few a family members and my SRLA coach.

My SRLA coach, Mr. Dunbar, sat down with me and began to ask me a few questions. His main concern was that my grades were slipping and his fear was that if my grades were low I would not be able to be part of the team. My coach knew that participating in SRLA was very important for me. Running helped me relieve my stress and worries. Running was a way for me to escape my fears about letting my parents down, fears of not graduating, and not  making it to college. SRLA helped me stand up to those fears and work through them. My coach had a very long conversation with me, and in hindsight that conversation is what gave me a reality check and made me the person I am today.

Mr. Dunbar told me about a continuation school in Hollywood that would be able to help me pull my grades up and attain the units required for high school graduation. He also suggested that I start looking at two year colleges and then transfer to a four year college. That immediately eased some of the pressure I was feeling. As a first generation student born in America, I always felt the need or obligation to enroll at a four year university right after high school.

During my time at the continuation school, I embarked on a different journey. I had to make up a handful of classes within a year in order to transfer back to Fairfax High School and graduate with my peers. I took about ten classes and passed all them with a C or better. Throughout my time at the continuation school, my SRLA coach kept up with my progress and motivated me to keep going. I continued running with the team when I had the chance. I was now running for the right reasons, which was to stay in shape and keep fit. I was no longer running in order to escape my problems. I felt as though I was running towards a goal.

The goal was to make something of myself, to attend college, and to figure out my place in the world. SRLA was there to motivate me in my time of need and it is thanks to Mr. Dunbar that I am reaching academic success. Without SRLA I would have probably dropped out high school. I have applied to a few colleges and am excited about my future.

Alexis is a 2018 SRLA Scholarship recipient. To make a donation to support future of Students Run LA like Alexis as they work towards their goals, click here.