On the surface I think I am like most young and modern American women: I take school seriously, I have dreams and goals for the future that I am determined to make happen, and I don’t expect anyone to do the hard work for me. I come from what is an increasingly normal background: my parents are divorced and I live with my mom and sisters and only occasionally see my dad since he now lives on the other side of the country, but I still feel very lucky to have a supportive, if spread out, family behind me. What makes me different from the rest of the crowd though is how I choose to fill my time away from school. I come from a middle income background so I knew I’d have to get a job in the summers and/or after school to help fund college, but instead of getting the easiest job I could find like many of my friends, I purposely sought work that would teach me new skills as well as give me a sense of fulfillment, which is why I turned to coaching soccer and working as a camp counselor. I know that every summer I am out there I’m helping the kids in my community, not only by watching to make sure they are playing with skill and determination, but also by helping them learn invaluable life lessons, like how to be a good teammate and friend, and how to settle disputes fairly and efficiently. I also have now added the title of waitress to my resume and while at first glance this job may not seem to offer me skills useful in pursuing a college degree, I have found it to offer incomparable training in multi-tasking, responsibility, money-management, perseverance and compassion for others.