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Crenshaw High student to study at Oxford

April 23, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Thanks to her own hard work and some very generous donations, a Crenshaw High School student will soon be attending the college of her dreams, famed Oxford University in England. Sharron Pearson is an honor student in the Crenshaw High School Gifted Magnet program. Out of more than 2,000 students at Crenshaw High, Pearson, a high-school junior, is among nearly 200 students in the gifted program, which has turned out scholar after scholar.

"We've had students that come out of here who go to Princeton, to Harvard," said gifted students coordinator Rochelle Hall. "This year's salutatorian is going to Stanford."

Now for the first time in the 20-year history of the gifted program at Crenshaw High School, a student has been chosen for a coveted trip to Oxford University in England as part of a special summer study abroad program. That student is Sharron Pearson.

"I wasn't really surprised because I really put my all into the application, and I really knew that my biography and my resume would set me apart," said Pearson.

Sharron says she learned about the program from her friend and went for it, despite her parents' objections.

"I told her no because I knew we couldn't do it financially, when in our hearts we really wanted her to go," said Sherrye Pearson, Sharron's mother.

Sharron was one of 400 students chosen from around the world for the summer program at Oxford University. Through the scholarship, the program is paying for her month-long studies. The community stepped up and covered her travel expenses to England.

"We are so, so thankful for all that reached out and said, 'I want to help this young lady reach her dreams,'" said Hall. "We're very proud of her, she comes from a great family. And she's a great person to represent Crenshaw High School."

"This tells me you can do anything, regardless of background or where you're from or your ethnicity," said Sharron. "You can reach for the stars and anything is possible."

School administrators at Crenshaw High School say they have troublemakers on campus, but they say those students are few and far between. They say the achievers in classrooms are getting bigger and better every day.

Sharron leaves in July for Oxford University, where she will spend the summer there studying creative writing and drama.


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