Eddie has worked hard. By age 8, he was changing his infant brother’s diaper. Eddie’s mom tirelessly worked two jobs while putting herself through college. In those early years, Eddie’s father was incarcerated — causing Eddie to take on some of the household responsibilities.

Though Eddie remembers the stress of his childhood, his mother and grandmother’s help and faith in God motivated him to maintain A’s and B’s at multiple schools in North Philadelphia. The local high school in his neighborhood had a “bad reputation and my mom did whatever it took” to get Eddie into a better high school. In fact, Eddie remembers his former schools as “harsh… sometimes teachers didn’t care.” That’s why, as Eddie entered 9th grade, his hardworking mother insisted that Eddie attend a high school that would both challenge and encourage him in his faith and to pursue academics at a high

Eddie’s mom found Jubilee member school, The City School.

“I was nervous.” Having moved many times, Eddie feared making new friends again. What seemed like another challenging transition, would become a significant shift in Eddie’s story. “The teachers welcomed me and shook my hand.” This simple gesture was rare at his former schools. “At The City School, when I went through a hard time in 10th grade, two teachers, Mr. Sorge and Ms. Clemens, were concerned for me. Friends would comfort me and help me realize that I can’t push people away and that they cared.” In the public school, “if you’re down they will just look at you” and not stop to help. Even older students at The City School watched out for him when he was a freshman. “We were like brothers and sisters.”

Eddie’s dad came home while Eddie was in middle school. Eddie fondly shared his memory of helping his dad rebuild his “birth home,” the home Eddie’s dad owned. Eddie loved to build and create with his dad. That memory and his mother and grandmother’s influence inspired Eddie to be become an engineer.

When teachers at The City School learned of Eddie’s dreams, they encouraged him to “write a plan” for his future.

That written plan is taking shape today. Currently enrolled at Penn State University, he majors in Aerospace Engineering. Eddie, on a scholarship with ROTC, plans to complete college, pursue a master’s degree, and become a pilot, and perhaps serve as an aerospace engineer. Thanks be to God for the influence of his family, The City School, and the help of Jubilee donors for investing in his future — the fruit of which is already evident.