At the age of three, Jacori experienced the separation of her parents. Growing up, that is all she knew, and it has developed her into the strong independent woman that she is today. “I lived in two households almost my entire life, it has been difficult having two bedrooms, and two sets of closets. I didn’t have a set place where I could do my homework, I was always traveling. I adjusted quickly though, especially because I knew it wouldn’t change.” Jacori has gained strong communication skills, and time management ever since. This mark in her life has also made marriage a strong value and goal for her. She strongly believes in perseverance in a relationship, and the continuity of it in marriage. She has made marriage a definite goal, and only wants to experience that moment once. She does not want to repeat with her kids what she has dealt with her whole childhood

Interviewer: Jonathan Soto



IMG_5290.PNGBeing a native of Nigeria, Dejii can only dream of going back home to start a business there. He moved to the United States while he was young, and grew up in Cottage Grove, Minnesota. He is currently a junior at Minnesota State University, and is studying international relations. He would like to take his degree, and go off to his hometown to relive all that he has missed from his motherland. He one day dreams of owning a thriving business that will help at risk students. “Many students struggle with income, education, and lack of post-secondary transition. Especially in my home country. Many things don’t seem like they will change there any time soon. I hope to make a difference, and close that gap that exists in Nigeria.” Although Dejii struggles with managing his time between his tasks and the things he wants to do, he believes that he will achieve his goals.

Interviewer: Jonathan Soto






“Don’t procrastinate,” is Grant’s go to advice when he encounters new faces every day. This motto has helped him not only achieve his greatest pride, which is going to college, but will also set him up for success in the future. With a newly picked major in computer science, he will be opening many doors to opportunities in his life. One of the happiest moments of Grant’s life is when his mother returned home after many long years of dealing with a drug and alcohol addiction. “She was very sick; I didn’t know if she was gonna live. She survived and came back home. My mom stopped doing it.” Grant feels that God gave his mother another chance. He also feels blessed, because he could have a family again. “I feel complete. I feel like I am not missing something anymore. Grant’s mother has been a very important piece in his life, and he is glad that she has been restored.

Interviewer: Jonathan Soto




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“The biggest struggle I have right now would be juggling my academics and work. I work around 35-40 hours between Student Dining Hall and Resident Hall security. I am taking 17 credits right now so I can finish my college as soon as I can. When I got a visa to come to US, my parents took out a big loan by putting our family house as a collateral. My parents pay huge amount of interest every month to the bank so I have an opportunity to study in US. I don’t want to rely on my parent for tuition so I work 40 hours per week. I want to finish my college and start making real salary so I can pay off my parents’ house and provide a stable life for my parents and siblings.”

Interviewer: Sujan Shrestha


0.jpeg“I hope to graduate eventually; it’s just been taking longer than most. I’m going to school for special education as I have such a passion for those who may have special needs. When I do graduate, I want to be an early childhood special education teacher for either preschoolers or kindergarteners. The day I graduate college I hope to be engaged (hopefully to my current boyfriend). I want my wedding to be exactly a year later on my boyfriend’s grandpa’s lake. A year after that, I want babies. I’m really excited to be a mom and a wife, but I’m more excited to be a teacher and have my career. I hope to someday teach in the cities because I have lived in a small town my whole life and living in the cities is something I have always wanted to do. I can’t wait for the day that I move out of a small town and start living on my own in a big city with my hopeful family, to be with my career that I love. When I picture my future I picture me, my beautiful husband, three perfect little babies and four to five dogs chilling, watching the office in our cute home in Minneapolis. I like planning out my life and looking forward to things, it makes me excited and happy for what’s to come.”

Interviewer: Amanda Michuda



0-1.jpeg“A year ago, I was present when earthquake hit Nepal. I saw buildings and family crumble around me. Fortunately, none of my family were harmed but my close friend’s family lost their house. I am halfway around the globe living in foreign environment and if anything were to happen to my family I don’t even have enough money to go home. I always hope and pray for my family’s good health every day. I just want to finish my college and establish my career so I can bring my parents to the US so I can improve their way of life.”

Interviewer: Sujan Shrestha


0.jpeg“My parents got divorced when I was six. After that happened my mom moved to a town house and my dad moved in with his mom and dad. My childhood wasn’t easy, my mom had us move five times. My mom only dated three men but got engaged to one. I was not a fan of him, he was quite the prick and verbally abused my brother and I by making us feel like we were nothing anymore. He would hit my brother and scream nasty names at us. It was a really hard stage in my life. He continued to call us dumb and worthless and screamed at my brother and I continuously. After going through five years of this it’s been very hard to trust another man that dates my mom. Until my mom met her new husband Tim I didn’t trust any men. I was scared, I didn’t want my family to ever go through another situation like we did with my mom’s ex. I will never consider divorce, If I get married I will make sure to marry the right man who can make me and my family happy forever. Although I experienced some of the hardest years of my life I’m sort of grateful for what I went through. It made me a stronger person and made me look at things in a whole different light. As of right now my mom is happily married and my dad is happily married. I guess that’s how life works, it gets crappy and then turns good again and then goes to crap again but for right now life is good. Everyone who doesn’t have divorced parents should be extremely grateful because I may be “fine” now but it took 11 years for me to be “fine.”

Interviewer: Amanda Michuda

0-1.jpeg“I’ve been here for just one year trying to figure what to do. I really more towards a Psychology major. Ever since I took a class in high school I’ve been so very interested in the inner workings of the mind. I’m already looking in to all different sorts of sports sciences to apply my Psychology. I have once been told that with a degree like mine would end up with me in a career cleaning houses! Did I believe them? No. I met these people while on a trip in Colorado. They called out to me asking me if I attended MSU Mankato on account of the T-shirt I was wearing. I told them yes and they said they too attended Mankato way back in their day. So now I’m pretty excited to just be done with the school and year and get into my new job at Ecumen.”

Interviewer: Angel Perez

0.jpeg“I think one of my best moments would be the day I got my visa to come to USA. Nepal is a small country so the universities there are not so good. I always wanted to be an Engineer since I was a kid because our country lacks good engineers. I mean Nepal produces smart scholars but they go abroad to study and stay there. I want to get a green card here and go back to my country so I can make progress. I am currently studying Mechanical Engineering and I enjoy my time here very much. I just hope I can get a good job after I graduate.”

Interviewer: Sujan Shrestha


“What is my happiest moment? That’s hard, I’ve had a lot of happy moments. My engagement makes me really happy. It wasn’t even a big moment, but the conversation we had when we decided we were going to spend the rest of our lives together, and she was who I wanted to be with for the rest of my life…I think about that, and I can’t help but smile.

Being engaged makes me feel excited, but it also makes me feel very safe. Life is kind of scary, and I think about my future and what my options are career-wise and school-wise, but it also makes me feel very safe because I have my person that is always going to be there for me, 100%, who I can talk to about anything, and I know she feels the same way.

In my future, I see myself having a family, working with kids, working outdoors…I envision my future to be very happy.”

Interviewer: Stephanie Rahman