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When you look at Ahoefa, an Oldfields senior, you see an exemplary honor student, a confident and poised dancer, the witty leader of the musical group, Gross Notes, and a volleyball player with a fabulous serve. Ahoefa is a young woman any school would be lucky to call their own. However, her world was very different four years ago when she was searching for a school and a place to call home.
In middle school, Ahoefa became affiliated with the Wight Foundation, which provides opportunities for talented students to achieve academic success and personal development in a college preparatory boarding school environment. While enrolled in this rigorous program, Ahoefa’s world was turned upside down, and her family found themselves in a very difficult situation that would shake most children to their core. However, the challenges facing her family only made Ahoefa’s determination stronger.
Ahoefa realized education was the answer, particularly a boarding school that would provide the structure she needed to secure her future. “I decided that the best way to make this a reality was through advancing my education and seizing any and all opportunities. This gave me a new way of thinking: I now had something to strive for, something still I carry in my mind to this day,” shares Ahoefa. She admits to sneaking out of bed, careful not to wake anyone else, so she could study more—straight A’s were the only acceptable option for her.
When the time came, she applied to 12 boarding schools, her mom and dad driving her to interview at each one. She describes the day the decisions were released, “March 10 was here—the day that would prove all my hard work paid off. Then I received an email from my top choice telling me that I was rejected. I cried; this was the first time I had been rejected for anything dealing with academics in my life, but I put on my big girl pants. I was like, ‘Okay, that’s fine. If you don’t want me, I don't want you!’ I still have eleven more schools.”
Unfortunately, the day continued with more rejection emails. Holding back tears, Ahoefa kept a brave face at school, but inside she was devastated. Then she realized that she hadn’t gotten an email from all of the schools—Oldfields was missing. They must have disliked her so much that they did not even bother to send a rejection email! When her mom picked her up from school, Ahoefa started telling her the bad news. Why was her mother was smiling? “I just told her that all of our hard work was for nothing. She then placed this large envelope in front of me. Guess who it’s from? Oldfields. I tear it open. There was no confetti or anything, just a stack of papers—but the first paper said that I had been accepted. Right then I knew that no matter what happened to my family, I had a place to go for the next four years of my life. I was, and still am, grateful for everything my parents did that informed the decisions that have gotten me to where I am today.”
Ahoefa continues to show courage as she continues to dream big! She has already been accepted by the University of Richmond and is still waiting to hear back from a few other schools. She wants to major in finance. We can’t wait to see what lucky school is smart enough to convince this courageous young woman to join their community!