Meet TikTok creator Emily Mazza (@emazza), who became homeless at 17-years-old, yet still managed to have stellar grades and be the first in her family to attend college.
Aside from being homeless, Emily endured many other struggles, and she’s sharing her inspiring story of how she overcame those barriers.
Her mom lost their house when Emily was still in high school and had a psychotic break at the same time, so she was unable to get a new place. Her mom’s psychotic break lasted for years.
Fortunately, mother and daughter are currently closer than ever. Over the years, Emily’s mom received therapy and counseling. With the support of mental health services and Emily’s brother, their mom is now doing much better.
Okay, now, back to the original story. So after losing their house, Emily stayed with her aunt for a little while until she got kicked out. Although she had no stable place to live, she never let her grades fall.
“I actually graduated high school with a 3.8 GPA, and I was accepted into every single college I wanted to go to, and for my main college I wanted to go to, I had a full ride,” she explained.
She decided to start community college. However, she discovered some issues with her social security number.
“They thought my birthday was a different day than it actually was. For two years straight, I was denied financial aid because they didn’t even think I was a citizen,” elaborated Emily.
Without any financial support, she needed to work multiple jobs to pay for her education. Finally, when the Social Security debacle was solved, she enrolled in a community college that offered her a scholarship for youth homelessness.