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“Perseverance Pays Off: Homeless Teen Graduates At The Top Of His Class”

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Nicholas Shanks shares his incredible story of determination in overcoming enormous obstacles and graduating at the top of his class. From his bunk in a crowded communal room in a homeless shelter, Nicholas studied after school, drew Japanese anime figures and played video games with other teens in the shelter to pass the time. Despite disheartening family troubles that included his parents drug addiction, evictions and enduring years of cramped and chaotic living conditions in a homeless shelter, Shanks excelled in school and graduated from Martin Luther King High School in Philadelphia as Valedictorian of the 2008 class with a 3.91 GPA.

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