17-year-old Cierria Tharpe is a senior at Von Steuben Metropolitan Science Center. This is her SIXTH year at Cabrini Connections and she has been with the same mentor, Diana Restrepo, the entire time. “She listens to me,” says Cierria. “I can go to her and tell her anything. She’s like family to me.” It sounds like their relationship has grown to a great place, which is now especially useful because Cierria is going through the college admissions process.
“I’m ready for college,” she says, “but I’m in that phase where I don’t think I can get in.” Cierria was on the honor roll in grammar school, but she wishes she had done better in high school. Her recommendation for students headed to high school is: “Don’t loose focus… Get your work done or you’re going to make it even harder on yourself.”
However, thanks to guidance from the College Zone, Cierria is excited about the prospect of going to a community college and then transferring to a college or university. “I realize now, when I’m getting help, just to take it,” she says. Cierria was afraid to ask for help at times in the past, but now she meets regularly with E and Lindsay (also in the spotlight this week) in the College Zone.
When she grows up, Cierria wants to be a pediatric nurse or a fashion marketer. She loves kids and has worked with them from an early age. (She has a lot of cousins and a little brother.) Also, her aunt is a nurse and she’s always looked up to her. Cierria loves fashion, too, and she would love to choose what goes on display in stores.
Cierria has a really big family. “Everybody is so spaced out, but when we get together, it’s like we haven’t been apart,” she says. Recently, one of her cousins was killed and she has relied on her family for support. “Always appreciate the stuff you have and the people in your life,” she says. “You never know what could happen.”
In family and at Cabrini Connections, Cierria does her best to be a leader and a role model. She was recently elected to the Youth Leadership Council for a second time. She wants to be a voice for what students are thinking and she wants to “feel better about myself knowing I made a difference.” Thanks for stepping up, Cierria! We look forward to honoring you at the Year-End Dinner!