Grad Spotlight: A Life-Changing Pilgrimage
At 17 years old, University Prep student Salwa A. will soon be accepting her high school diploma. By taking advantage of dual enrollment opportunities, Salwa will be graduating early and beginning her next path at the University of the Pacific. A first generation college student, Salwa has set her sights high, hoping to become the first doctor in her family.
“I enrolled in Visions to be able to gain credits for high school while concurrently taking college classes,” says Salwa. “I’ve taken a total of six college courses at Delta College while at Visions. This allowed me to graduate a year early and begin the next steps to becoming a pharmacist.”
Although she always knew that she wanted to go into the medical field, it was Salwa’s counselor, Julie Winalski, and credentialed teacher, Don Bisio, who really supported her through school and helped carve out her career path.
“It was just this year when I finally figured out what I wanted to do with my life,” shares Salwa. “Mr. Bisio really helped me plan out my school weeks and follow my planner. Mrs. Winalski was a major help in helping me graduate early and plan out what I want to do after high school.”
Opportunity of a Lifetime
Aside from her academic ventures, Salwa was able to take part in a more personal endeavor during her time at Visions – performing the Islamic pilgrimage Umrah in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Alongside her mother and three younger siblings, Salwa was able to perform the pilgrimage twice, an experience that she can only describe as dream-like.
“I was fortunate enough to perform Umrah in the holy place of Islam during the holy month of Ramadan,” Salwa shares. “This pilgrimage is not obligatory, but it’s a blessing. The experience was unreal.”
Salwa’s journey through her education and her faith have provided her opportunities for growth, exploration and lifelong learning. As she approaches a new chapter of her life, Salwa continues to look back on her time at Visions with gratitude.
“I’m beyond excited to graduate and begin a new chapter in my life, but this chapter will never be forgotten,” says Salwa. “Visions has been the key to many of my successes and I hope that it’ll be the same for the many more students to attend.”