Meet the 2017 Leap Year Fellows

Breaking Down Barriers for Today’s Leaders in Action

Braids Atlanta
Tiayana
2017 Graduate of Grady High School
Favorite Food: Fried Rice
Favorite Color: Purple
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Taronjah (Ty)
2017 Graduate of Towers High School
Favorite Food: Chicken Alfredo
Favorite Color: Blue
Bun Atlanta
Essence
2017 Graduate of Grady High School
Favorite Food: Pizza
Favorite Color: Red
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Irah
2017 Graduate of Towers High School
Favorite Food: Pizza, Burgers
Favorite Color: Yellow

2016 Fellows

Transforming Communities & Ourselves

In high school, one of my teachers challenged me to take an AP class but a fear of failure kept me from signing up. That same fear is what kept me from registering for the ACT and missing the deadline to apply to colleges. In my application to be a Leap Year Fellow, I spoke about regret, the problems I wanted to fix in my community, and my desire for a second chance at making my parents proud by graduating college. I thrived as a Leap Year Fellow and am now finishing my freshman year at Clayton State University. I regularly visit my old high school to serve as a mentor and role model for current students. Leap Year gave me a second chance and changed my life.”

“I was a senior in high school when I applied to be a Leap Year Fellow. Even though I love to write, I had trouble finishing my college applications. I had low self esteem and didn’t ask for help in studying for the ACT leading to a poor score. In my Leap Year, I served my community and matured as a person. My confidence grew and I found my passion in journalism and politics. Leap Year gave me the study help I needed on the ACT which increased my score. I am now a freshman at Middle Georgia State University where I plan to study Communications.”

My proudest moment was the when I made it to the State Finals for pole vaulting. I thought it was the perfect way to end my senior year in high school before I fulfilled my dream of going to college. But when I went to start applying to college, I learned that my family wanted me to go to the military instead. I was heartbroken and didn't know what to do so by the time graduation came, I didn’t have any plans. Then my coach encouraged me to apply to Leap Year. I spent the next several months learning about college, career, and the importance facing my problems instead of running away. I finally spoke with my family and got them excited about me starting college. I am now finishing my freshman year majoring in Business Administration!