Turning Challenges Into Opportunities

Turning Challenges Into Opportunities

Pursuing a higher education has its challenges, but Christian Fox, a 22-year-old living in a single-parent household with assistance from the Housing Choice Voucher program, not only focuses on his education, but added responsibilities helping his mother purchase necessities.

A senior at Texas A&M University-San Antonio majoring in history, he has not let the struggles in his home affect his pursuit of higher education and success.

Fox has earned distinctions from the university’s dean’s and president’s list while earning a 3.65 grade point average.

His academic success has led to receiving scholarships from Opportunity Home for two consecutive years.

“I chose to study an interest of mine and put the work toward it,” Fox said about the keys to his success. “Do the work, turn it in and have time to study.”

On track to graduate with his bachelor’s degree in the spring, Fox wants to further his education at The University of Texas at San Antonio and enroll in a graduate program in hopes of working at a museum, national park or in archives.

His fascination with history, specifically viking culture, stemmed from high school.

“It’s important to learn how cultures work, their influence and the civilizations before us,” he said.

Fox is grateful for mentors that have crossed his path, including Loretta Garibay, the organization’s community resource analyst, for helping him navigate the scholarship process and answering his questions.

“Shoutout to Loretta,” Fox said. “If I didn’t have that support, I don’t know what would have happened to me.”

Opportunity Home’s scholarship program aids students in housing programs, like Fox, to work toward breaking generational poverty cycles and attain self-sufficiency through educational opportunities. 

Garibay, who oversees the scholarship program, sees the impact and relief funding brings toward the burden of paying for their studies out of pocket.

“Postsecondary education is incredibly expensive,” she said. “We are a viable option to help residents offset some of those costs for school.”

Fox hopes everyone receiving assistance from Opportunity Home can pursue their dreams and not let obstacles discourage them. 

“Pursue your goals if they are reachable and keep moving forward,” he said. “Even through bad times, bad times are temporary.”