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Luis Lopez

Need Level

2.6/5

Amount Needed

$2,500

Merit Level

3.4/5

Class Standing

Sophomore

College GPA

2.86

Major

Molecular and cellular biology

UIUC

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Personal Statement

I moved to Mexico when I was around 12. I ended up staying in Mexico for 5-6 years. During that time, I became somewhat distant from my family because of family issues. We struggled financially a lot, so as soon as I turned 16, I became a full-time worker. This is where things began to become tricky for me because my school was three hours away from the place we were living at, and I worked until 11 p.m. everyday, so juggling all of this became extremely difficult on a daily maximum if 4 hours of sleep. It was during my Junior year of high school when I got sick and the doctor said it was just exhaustion. It made me realize I wouldn’t make it through high school if things stayed the same, so I decided to go to the United States. I didn’t see my mom as much when I became 16 because we were both working; I was financially independent during this period of time. I told my relatives that I was planning on going back to the United States and my Aunt decided to take me in as long as it was only until I go to college. I gladly accepted her offer because nobody else would take me in. After that I told my mom to transfer guardianship over to my aunt. Just to clarify, I did not have any personal problems with her, the only reason we didn’t have a deep relationship was because the circumstances didn’t allow it; we both had our own problems. Unfortunately, she had to focus more on my sisters since they needed more attention due to an incident that occurred around that time. The guardianship transfer paper that I took to the United Stated is the one I submitted some time ago to the Financial Aid Office, which is signed by a notary in Mexico City. During my time with my aunt I just took the occasional job I can find and I would ask a family friend that has a bakery to let me work there if he ever needs extra help. The money I earned from all of this turned out to be enough for my daily expenses. My aunt would provide a place for me to sleep and food, but for everything else I would pay for myself. It was extremely difficult since I had to go to night school, normal school and online school to graduate on time. When I got to college, I was now relying 100% on my refund checks and loans because I couldn’t save up much money. I managed to spread that money for my entire freshman year. It was only until recently I reached out to my mom to see how my younger sister was doing (since my other sister also ended up leaving at a young age). I started sending her money when the pandemic started because things were getting tough in Mexico and I strongly believe that my younger sister shouldn’t have to go through the financial struggles that I went through.

Student Info

Ethnicity:

Citizenship:

Gender:

Veterans:

LGBTQ+ :

Hispanic or Latino

Marital Status:

US Citizen

First Generation:

Male

Personal Dependents:

No

Family Dependents:

Single

Yes

0

1

No

High School GPA:

Graduation Year:

Major GPA:

3.7

SAT/ACT Score:

2023

Open to Mentorship:

3

High School Name:

1110

Yes

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