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Reaching the Summit

Good evening my name is Jayden Cooley. I believe my classmate, Alex, with whom I’ve shared my journey with since junior kindergarten used the analogy of his experience at City Academy as a rollercoaster ride. I would agree. We have experienced some really great times at City Academy and I have enjoyed the ride as well, Alex. But allow me to share my experience at City Academy. Since I can remember, I have always been fascinated with mountains. Not necessarily inclined to climb one, but metaphorically or symbolically. Symbolically, the thought of climbing a mountain represents a sense of achievement. Even with a few stumbles and sudden shifts; reaching the summit seems gratifying. Something similar to my time at City Academy.

The start of my climb at City Academy was rough. My Junior Kindergarten year, I managed to break my elbow and walked around school as a little red haired guy with a broken elbow in a cast. Recovery took months, but seemed like my entire JK year. The one thing I learned from such an experience, was to never lose aspiration and I didn’t. Moving on, kindergarten and first grade was a much better experience, but by 2nd through 4th grade, the work got progressively harder.

Fifth grade brought about a whole new set of tribulations and challenges. Mrs. Venne, our former 5th grade teacher, was the first to introduce us to REAL homework. Some nights I was up past 1 o’clock trying to complete homework. She pushed us pass our limit that’s for sure, but it was necessary and it helped prepare us beyond 6th grade but also for secondary school. That year felt like a never ending cycle, but it allowed me to witness true determination.

Ahhh!!!! Finally. I made it to the top of the summit. I’ve risen above; I’ve conquered. As I stand atop my mountain, looking down on my low and high points, my accomplishments, my failures, I realize life is filled with steep inclines, high altitudes and unpredictable challenges. I often wonder where I would be if my travels were not rocky. Would I have given up or kept striving? I now have my answer: I will keep striving. No matter the circumstances, I shall persevere.

Thank you City Academy for helping me to endure what it means to conquer and what it means to stand atop the summit. To my mother and extended family, thank you for being the harness protecting and supporting me along the way.

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