Nicol Hernandez impressed from the moment one meets her, shaking my hand and expressing it was nice to meet me. She has always loved going to school, but worried if she would financially be able to make her dreams a reality. She took every opportunity to gain knowledge, spending her summers volunteering in programs to help her community because in the back of her mind she thought “…Even if society rejects my financial background, I am determined that the world I will leave my children will be better than mine.” She understood to challenge her mind, body and soul, working hard in school academically to graduate Valedictorian and challenged herself running three Los Angeles Marathons. There was no doubt Nicol was going to her dream school U.C. Berkeley as a L.I.F.T. Scholar! She has big dreams, but the dream that touches hearts the most is her goal to be happy. She knows she is a role model for her sisters and her community. Her greatest role models are her dear parents, understanding beyond her years that quality of character is the greatest gift one can receive. For Nicol L.I.F.T. means “that education opens our minds and grants us the power to overcome the assumed supremacy of others… I will be free. Free to think. Free to speak. Free to live. Free to prosper…” The journey of Nicol has entered the next chapter and it is sure to be amazing!