At 17, Kwasi Enin is engaging with an infectious smile, and has his choice of Ivy League schools = accepted to all 8 (Harvard, Yale, Darmouth, …)! How proud are his parents? How proud would you be?
We are in the season of scholarship letters, and college acceptances… At Wyoming and Walnut High Schools, that is ALL Seniors and their parents covet, yearn for, to the point of lust… This young man attended a public high school, had no special tutoring, and no “leg up” privilege. So how did he do it?
Seven (7) features that set Kwasi Enin above the crowd:
1. Focusing on Opportunity over Obstacles – as immigrants from Ghana, all they saw were how many options could be capitalized on! Working hard was just part of the scenario, not a burden.
2. Internally Driven – Parents set the goal at 95%, then let him set the agenda for his life (includes youth group, choir, viola, sports, ….. parents did NOT micro-manage his schedule).
3. Intact family, and a united parental front gave a rock solid foundation to launch from.
4. Value of education, giving back, and family were top priorities (95% was not a punishment, or just a goal reflected on grades: music, service …. they knew he was capable of the best… ) . This is not a kid who spent incessant hours gaming, and/or on social media….
5. Responsibility for his decisions, and the outcome were stressed on a daily basis. Self esteem came from achieving, dreams backed up with action, words, and deeds.
6. Consistent Faith played a role in developing character, integrity, and discipline. A weekly commitment to developing the whole person (mind, body, and soul).
7. Follow up – parents were actively involved in his life: knowing the outcomes of his work, to dissect, debrief, question, …. Notice NOT as dictators, but motivators and encouragers!
So how many traits does, or did your son/daughter have access to? Still not too late to re-establish the ground rules- Who knows maybe they will be the next Ivy 8 accepted!