Friday, June 04, 2004

More spelling mania

Ashley of "Spellbound" was a hungry girl with a photographic memory, determined at 13 to break her family's cycle of poverty. But a few short years later she became pregnant.
"I was always someone who wanted to be different -- who wanted to work harder, who wanted to achieve more, who wanted to succeed," she said. Instead, "I was basically repeating my family history of teenaged pregnancy. I felt like a failure because everyone had such high expectations for me and thought that I would be the one who would break the cycle."
But a curious viewer of "Spellbound" looked up her up and found her with no more college plans, staying with relative after relative, caring for a toddler.

But help from her and other movie watchers has motivated Ashley to rekindle her own drive. She has enrolled at Howard University, struggled through six classes while living in a homeless shelter, and eventually rented an apartment.

She earned a 3.8 GPA.


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