Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Chance of a Lifetime!

I wasn't the only one who was presented the chance of a lifetime recently! This is a great story that I have to share with all of you!

Meet Badr Raissi. He's not your typical 16 year old. Badr came to the United States 3 years ago from Rabat, Morocco. In this short amount of time, he's not only conquered a language barrier, but has become an Honor Student at Passaic County Technical Insititute in Wayne, New Jersey where he is a junior.

Badr is a student member of the AT&T/Junior Achievement Worldwide Job Shadow Initiative (AT&T/JA). After a recent job shadow experience, members were invited to participate in an essay contest describing their job shadow experience, with the winner receiving a trip to the Olympic Games in Vancouver to cheer on Team USA!

I read Badr's essay with a big smile on my face! Not only did he show how his job shadow experience had a big impact on his future outlook, he connected the experience to much bigger themes in his life and underscored all the sacrifices he and his family have made. Read the essay...it will floor you.

I know what finding out you've won a trip to the Olympics feels like so I can estimate his state of mind when he was told he had written the winning essay and would travel to Vancouver; his excitement as he sat in Canada Hockey Place, explored the athlete village, and attended other Olympic events.

And here is where it gets really good, he was able to sit down and talk with two decorated U.S. Olympians...Picabo Street and my personal sport icon Michelle Kwan! You heard me...MICHELLE KWAN!

I would have fainted at that moment...Badr manages to keep it together!

It's great when amazing things happen to amazing people! I envy Badr. I made it to Vancouver because I'm a great Blogger...Badr made it because he's a great person! Badr reminds us that goals, education, ambition, and good old-fashioned hard work can really get us places in life.

*AT&T/JA Job Shadow Initiative is one of the largest corporate job shadow initiatives which pairs AT&T employees with students to provide a firsthand experience in the working world and demonstrate how education is essential to future success. AT&T launched its high school success program and joined with Junior Achievement to help the approximately 1.3 million high school students dropping out each year—a problem more severe among minority students.

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