Former foster child Angela Campbell is on a mission to change the system, and she won’t let anyone stop her. She spent six years in foster care starting at the age of twelve and worked her entire way through high school purchasing her own shoes, clothing, and anything else she needed. During her senior year of high school, she enrolled in an independent living program and moved into her own apartment. Now, she is a successful college student who shares her story in hopes of inspiring other foster children to persevere through all obstacles that come their way. Angela is pursuing a degree in Social Work at Bennett College and has been on the Honors and Dean’s list every semester. She loves attending an all-female school and considers it her “oasis” because everyone there accepts one another. After graduation, she hopes to attend the University of Pittsburgh and obtain her PhD in Social Work. Her goal is to become an in-home family therapist working with at risk youth. Outside of her studies, Angela makes a point of staying involved on campus. She is the Vice President of the Social Work Club, and Chair of Events Committee for NAACP. She also worked for the African American Male Promise Preparation Program at AmeriCorps (Keys Service Corps). In her role as an English tutor, she works to prepare ninth and tenth grade minority men for a scholarship awarded to children in Allegheny County by increasing their reading and writing skills. When she has free time, Angela loves going to the movies, shopping, visiting amusement parks and attending campus activities. She also has a passion for poetry and enjoys going to jazz lounges where poetry is performed. Angela describes poetry as her outlet. When she was in foster care, poetry allowed her to pour her heart out when she felt no was else was there. Because of her own experiences, Angela knows how important it is for foster youth to advocate for change in the system. She writes, “It is our civic duty to our peers to voice our experience and work to implement change. It is important to knock down barriers and open up opportunities for the next generation the way our ancestors helped us.” The agenda that Angela has set for herself isn’t always easy. However, with counseling and a genuine support system, she has learned to leave some of her experiences in the past where they belong and focus on her future. Angela writes, “I manage to press forward because I am highly motivated by the foster children who haven’t won their battles just yet.” Her mentor is proud of Angela’s ability to overcome obstacles and describes her as “the epitome of the intelligence, talent and creativity that resides in foster children.” Angela’s self-stated mission is to encourage, inspire, celebrate, and educate foster children. With all of her accomplishments and endeavors, we believe she’s well on her way to declaring her mission a success.
Team(s) or Cohort(s)
2011 Outstanding Young Leaders