Neighborhood Focus Alum Prepares to Graduate with Honors, Attend Furman University

She’s currently the co-valedictorian of her graduating class at Legacy Early College in Greenville, and has been accepted with full scholarships to Furman University in the fall. Cynthia Oliver is on the road to achieving her dream of becoming a doctor one day - but her journey has not been an easy one, and has included many twists and turns along the way.

Photo by Will Crooks, Greenville Journal

Photo by Will Crooks, Greenville Journal

Cynthia started attending Neighborhood Focus’s after-school program as a youth. Since her mom worked, it was a safe place for her and her siblings to come and learn, meet friends and build their faith. As the staff and volunteers got to know Cynthia more, they realized not only was she a kind and caring person, but was academically talented, as well.

As she progressed through high school, Cynthia managed to keep her top grades, and it became evident college was a very real possibility for her. She would be the first in her family to attend college, but the considerable cost associated with higher education initially held the dream out of Cynthia’s grasp.

At the encouragement of her mentors at Neighborhood Focus, she was introduced to Julio Hernandez, Chief of Staff, Division of Inclusion & Equity and former Associate Director for Hispanic Outreach at Clemson University. Hernandez helped Cynthia navigate the college application process and guided her through available scholarship opportunities.

Cynthia has long wanted to become a doctor, so she can help people who need it most. She’s hopeful she’ll have that opportunity one day. For now, Cynthia is preparing to graduate with honors from high school, and like many other high school seniors, is getting excited about her move to college in the fall.

Her journey has not been an easy one, but with the support of her teachers, family and mentors at Neighborhood Focus, Cynthia is on her way to achieving her dreams. We look forward to seeing the amazing things Cynthia is going to accomplish at Furman and beyond!