In an inspiring story, a New Jersey student did not allow homelessness and other problems to determine his future.
17-year-old Dylan Chidick, got 17 acceptance letters from colleges to choose from, “I have to have a lot of determination,” he says.
Dylan and his family moved from Trinidad when he was only 7 years old and became a citizen in the country. His younger twin brothers are living with serious heart conditions, and his family has been in and out of homelessness.
Dylan says, “There has been a lot of people saying, ‘you’re not going to achieve this.’ And me, getting these acceptance letters kind of verifies what I have been saying, that I can do it, and I will do it,” he said.
He has always set his goals pretty high for himself, becoming the senior class president at Henry Snyder High School, and was inducted into the Honor Society. Now, he is to become the first in his family to go to college.
His single mom mustered the courage to ask help from non-profit Women Rising so that Dylan could do well.
“It has been hard financially, we have been homeless,” said Dylan’s mother, Khadine Phillip.
“Putting herself out there like that, that made me more determined to never let us get back in that situation again,” Dylan said.
“She is a great example in doing all that’s necessary to help her children,” said Roseann Mazzeo of Women Rising.
The non-profit has helped put them up in permanent supportive housing, giving Dylan a safe place to study and wait on his last acceptance letter.
“The College of New Jersey I haven’t heard back yet but that is my top school right now,” Dylan said. Hoping that number brings him up to 18 choices.
The Hand of God can be evident in Dylan’s life as all the application fees were waived because of his financial situation.