Reaffirm a Calling

“I have nothing inside of my brain, if you cut it open you wouldn’t find anything.”  This is what one of my fourth grade math buddies said to me one day when I was helping her with geometry.  It broke my heart into a million pieces.  I have only been a math buddy in the TC Reading and Math Buddies program for a short time, but this experience has already had quite an impact on me.  It saddened me to see that this little girl was doubting her potential and setting herself up for failure in a society where minority children are faced with so much adversity.  A lot of academic issues that children like her have are not necessarily due to an inability to learn, but to various psychosocial issues. This incident, as well as previous experiences I have had working with and conducting research on youth from disadvantaged backgrounds, solidified for me what my calling in life is: serving the psychological and developmental needs of at-risk youth and adolescents.