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Winston-Salem chronicle. (Winston-Salem, N.C.) 1974-current, June 18, 2015, Page A3, Image 3

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Winston-Salem native leaves Wake Forest debt-free and employed Michael Green, raised by single mom, overcomes the odds BY TODD LUCK THE CHRONICLE ?; ... < Michael Green, a Winston-Salem native, is a 22-year-old 2015 Wake Forest University graduate with no debt and a job lined up with Deloitte Consulting in Washington, DC. The youngest of three children. Green was raised by a single mom. When he was in high school, his mother, Carol, worked two jobs hoping to help her son with his upcoming college expenses, but knowing she could never afford to pay for a college like Wake Forest. Then one day, she took a call from him saying that he'd gotten the Joseph G. Gordon Scholarship, a full ride scholarship covering all his expenses at Wake Forest University. She was so happy she hollered and screamed with joy. The Winston-Salem State University graduate promptly returned to hav ing one full-time job as a teacher's assistant at Southwest Elementary School. The Gordon Scholarship is a merit based scholarship for underrepresented students, such as African-Americans like Green. Up to seven scholars are chosen annual ly. Green said he always knew he'd get in a good university because he had good grades; it was just a matter of paying for it. "My family has a very strong tradition of higher education, and so it was always expected that I go to college," he said. "That was always part of my plan. I always knew whatever I wanted to do would require a college education." As a child in Winston Salem, he walked to school at KimNirjey Park Elementary ana Paisley IB Magnet School, where he attended sixth through 10th grade. At Paisley, he started in the International Baccalaureate program, which he would finish at Parkland Magnet High School. He said the rigor ous program helped him prepare for college with diverse, challenging cours es that emphasized writing. His exposure to college began at an early age. While attending Paisley, he participated in the Duke TIP (Talent Identification Program) for four sum mers. TIP lets young stu dents who score high enough on the SAT to par ticipate in three-week sum mer enrichment programs held on college campuses. In Green's case, he went to Appalachian State University and the University of Georgia. In his sophomore year, his English class got library cards to the Wake Forest University Library. Going there to do research was his Photo by Todd Luck Michael Green poses with a monument to his frater nity, Kappa Alpha Psi. Michael Green's family congratulates him after graduating from Wake Forest University on May 18. They are (L-R) Gloria Green, his grandmother; Carol Green, his mother; and Latoya Hunt, his sister. Photo by Erin Micelle for the Winston-Salem Chronicle first exposure to Wake Forest. "I just remember it being a huge library," he said. "I remember coming here with my friends and just being in awe." Green's scholarship required him to live on campus for all four years. The university was only a few minutes from his house, so he was able to keep his barber and attend his home church, and his mother was only a phone call away. During his sophomore year, he lived in the H.O.P.E. (Helping Our People Excel) House, a stu dent residence with a com munity service theme. House residents mentored students at low- income schools, like his former schools, Paisley and Parkland. This was a cause near to Green's heart. He's been involved with Big Brothers, Big Sisters and mentored students at Kimberley Park Elementary. He said it's very important to him to mentor disadvantaged youth. "For them to see that there are people who look like them in these spaces - going to college, being suc cessful - I think that's very powerful. I think that can be very influential in the lives of young people," he said. Green said it was a change of scenery going from the predominately poor, minority public schools he attended to the largely white, affluent Wake Forest, but he always felt welcome. He said that he found his niche to fit in and become involved on the campus, joining Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity and serving as a President's Aide, being a part of a group of student advisers to Wake's president. "If you give a lot to the campus, it'll give a lot to you," he said. Green initially wanted to be a business major, but eventually landed on poli tics and international affairs. He did an internship at a lobbying firm that worked ,in Washington, D.C. and fell in love with the city. During the on campus Summer Management Program (SMP), representatives from Deloitte came down to talk about their company and do a case study with students. He was able to connect and network with people from the company. "When they told me they worked with federal organizations and that they're based in the Washington. D.C., area. 1 was basically sold," he^ said. Eventually they hired him, and he'll soon move to Washington, D.C. to begin his job as a human capital analyst, helping federal organizations with their human resource needs. Carol, whose daughter is a teacher and other son is attending WSSU, said she was very glad her youngest son got the chance to attend Wake Forest. "It's one of the best experiences he could have had," she said. For more information about the Joseph G. Gordon Scholarships, go to http://financialaid.wfu .edit/ merit-base d - scholarships/Joseph-g-gor don -scholarships/. We're powering future rock stars. And those "I'm-really-proud-of-her, but-that's-really-loud" moments. That's why we're investing in new, innovative technologies to keep our systems smarter, cleaner and always improving for today, and tomorrow. Because we know what we're delivering is more than just electricity. It's power - for your life. .DUKE ? ENERGY. Power for your life. Quick fact: We recently completed a decade-long, $9 billion program to modernize our power plants and retire almost 4,500 megawatts of older coal-fired units. Message paid for by Duke Energy shareholders

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