Homeless Janitor Accepted to Harvard University
Reminiscent of last week’s story about the homeless teen who is Harvard-bound this fall, 18-year-old Dawn Loggins did not have an easy life.
While the rest of her peers may be coasting through their senior year in high school, Loggins is making ends meet by working as a janitor after-hours in her school. Luckily for the smart teen, she has a chance to turn her life around, as she joins Harvard University this upcoming fall.
When she was growing up, Loggins’ parents neglected their kids and abused drugs. There were periods of time when the family didn’t have enough money for food. And more often than not, Loggins lived without power and water, forcing the teen to finish her homework by candlelight and fetch water from a nearby park. After a few years, her parents consistently abandoned Loggins and her brother, giving them no choice but to stay with their grandmother who also paid little attention to them.
“When I lived with my grandma,” Loggins recalled, “there was trash all over the house. She never really explained to me that it was important to shower–it was important to take care of your self, so I would go months at a time without showering. I would wear the same dress to school for months at a time.”
With consistent bullying and a precarious lifestyle, Loggins moved to three middle schools and four high schools before finally settling at Burns High. It was there that they realized her full potential. Guidance counselor Robyn Putnam helped the teen catch up with her schoolwork, as Loggins quickly became a straight A student and scored an amazing 2110 on her SATs.
In the middle of her improving performance in school, the teen discovered that her phone had been disconnected. To make matters worse, her parents had dropped her grandmother off at a homeless shelter while her older brother Shane lived with friends. She was officially homeless.
“I realized I was getting nowhere calling my parents,” she tells Star. “What was I going to do? Cry about it?”
Fortunately, the community rallied behind her as she movied in with Sheryl Kolton who works as a bus driver at the school. The faculty and staff also helped out financially and offered Loggins the job as the school janitor.
With all their support, Loggins applied to various colleges, as well as her dream school: Harvard. “I just made a decision that I was not going to end up like my parents,” the teen said.
Upon receiving the thin envelope and expecting a rejection, Loggins was shocked by the contents of the letter from Harvard.
“Dear Ms. Loggins,” she read the letter. “I am delighted to report that the Admissions Committee has asked me to inform you that you will be admitted to the Harvard College class of 2016. We send such an early positive indication only to outstanding applicants.”
As Loggins goes on to finally turn her life around, she leaves with one advice for all the teens out there: “If there is anybody at all who has a dream, then they can definitely make it happen. There are no excuses. It depends on you and no one else.”