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Nov 21st

Glaze “beats the odds”

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alexander-glazeSouthwest High School senior Alexander Glaze on March 11 was awarded a $4,000 “Beat the Odds” scholarship from Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) – Minnesota. Glaze not only ‘beat the odds’ tackling his high school assignments and tests over the past four years, but was also recently granted acceptance to Stanford University, which he plans to attend in fall 2011.

“I am extremely proud to be a part of the Stanford class of 2015,” Glaze said. “I am very excited and it feels good to know that whatever direction I choose to take, Stanford will help me get there.”

CDF – Minnesota recognizes four local teens annually who have overcome extreme adversity including painful family separation, poverty, illness, loss of family and abuse to succeed in school and life. Glaze’s high school counselor, Mary Morseth, who nominated him for the award, said, “In my 30 years as an educator, Alex is one of the most outstanding students I have ever known.”

Glaze has dealt with family addiction, rejection and homelessness but has managed to become a leader and scholar. He and his twin sister were removed from their mother’s home when they were eight years old due to her addiction. Their father was granted custody, but, in Glaze’s words, “My father never really cared about me.” His mother died from a drug overdose when he was in ninth grade. “Although my mother was an addict,” Glaze said, “she supplied me with more love and care than I could have asked for.”

Glaze has worked part-time to provide for his own food and clothing since he was in ninth grade. On his eighteenth birthday, his father asked Glaze and his sister to leave and never return. A family friend took them in, allowing them to stay in school.

“Although my life has been filled with adversity, in my opinion, it has made me a better person,” Glaze said. “I learned early on that hard work in high school would be the only way I could improve my situation. I made up my mind that I would try to get the best grades I could, no matter what.”

Glaze’s hard work has paid off. He will graduate from Southwest High School this spring with a 3.5 GPA and a 30 on his ACT. He has taken numerous advanced courses, been involved with student government, played football and was nominated twice to attend the national Youth Leadership Council. After college, he plans to attend graduate school or law school. Glaze will be the first person in his family to attend college.


 

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