Dylan Chidick, 17, from New Jersey, has had several challenges including homelessness. Recently, he has been accepted to 17 colleges. He is determined to be the first in his family to go to college. Dylan, who moved to the US from Trinidad at the age of 7, told: “The dream I want to achieve, I have to have a lot of determination.”
Life has been tough for Dylan and his family. His younger twin brothers both have serious heart il**es**s and they have been in and out of homelessness. He said: “My family went through a lot and there has been a lot of people saying, ‘you can’t do that,’ or ‘you’re not going to achieve this,’ and me — getting these acceptances — kind of verifies what I have been saying. I can do it and I will do it,”
He has already proven himself as the senior class president at Henry Snyder High School and a member of the honor society. Now, the teenager wants to enter college to achieve his dreams for his family. Khadine Phillip, his mother, took courage to ask for help from the non-profit “Women Rising” and Dylan is more than grateful for it. Dylan said: “Making herself vulnerable and putting herself out there, that made me determined to never let us get back in that situation again,”
“She is a great example in doing everything necessary to help her children,” Roseann Mazzeo, executive director for Women Rising, said. This organization was the one who provided them permanent supportive housing as Dylan expects for his last acceptance letter from the College of New Jersey, which is his “top school right now.” Moreover, all the costs for his college applications have been waived, considering his financial situation. Once he picked his preferred college, he said he wants to study political science.