“I knew I wanted to do something more satisfying with my life than working in retail, but I just didn’t know how to get there,” shares single mother of three, Chiquita.

So, in 2015, Chiquita entered a youth and young adult development employment program at MSC. A case manager helped her to define and develop a path for her to reach her goal of working in youth development. Chiquita focused on her education first. After earning her GED, she started college-level courses at Highline College, and in 2017 earned her Associate’s degree in human services.

While she was working towards her Associate’s degree, Chiquita also worked on developing job specific skills by interning at MSC. She helped with some
administrative tasks and also provided direct service to clients by helping others earn their GED. After her internship ended, Chiquita stayed on at MSC as a volunteer working with the GED program.

“It’s been hard to work full-time and go to school full-time,” shares Chiquita. “It’s been hard to be away from my kids so much, but in the end I know it will be worth it. It’s all a learning process and I’m taking it all in.”

Chiquita is currently 30 credits away from earning her Bachelor’s degree in youth development. This past year she served as an AmeriCorps volunteer with MSC working with our GED program, the HEART program for kids living in MSC’s shelter, and providing job training skills like resume building for students searching for employment. She plans on continuing to serve our community next year at MSC and hopes to expand MSC opportunities by providing additional workshops on basic computer skills training.

“I’m able to pursue my dreams and goals here at MSC. I’m doing it now, helping youth and other people. I enjoy it here, I just love it, love the people, and love the vibe,” shares Chiquita.