Xochitl Bennett

November 11th, 2011 ·
  • 2011 Ask.com High Hopes Scholarship recipient
  • University of California, Los Angeles

Of the many people around me, there is one person who has made the biggest impact in helping me be the person I am today. That person is my mother. Through her life, I have learned many lessons and come to value the things she loved most in her life. Learning about her through my siblings, I am able to emulate the same characteristics she once possessed. My mother was always a fighter. Keeping true to our last name, Guerreiro (“warrior” in Portuguese), my mother fought with breast cancer for the majority of my childhood. She underwent numerous chemotherapy and radiation treatments, only to discover at her five check-up that the cancer had not left her body. In 2003, on Christmas Day, I was forced to witness the hardest thing any ten year old has had to see; I watched my mother breathe her last breath as the fight in her slowly left and death overcame her. My mother has taught me many lessons. She created this drive in me. Her never-ending willingness to take matters into her own hands is one characteristic that I have learned to emulate. I strive for the best in all I do from school to relationships with family members. She taught me to be strong and that nothing is achieved without hard work.

“Xochitl demonstrates three qualities that I predict will insure her success in the years to come; she is mature and accepts responsibility well, she has made worthy goals for herself, and she is cooperative and a personable young woman who contributes positively to the world.”

Teacher, Berkeley High School