by Mayor Michael Tubbs
April 19, 2018
This morning marks a special homecoming for me. Today, I returned to my old high school, Franklin, home of the Yellowjackets, to announce our Stockton Scholars program.
When I graduated from Franklin, I never dreamed that I would come back to Stockton, much less come back to my old high school, a decade later, as Mayor, to offer students college scholarships. Today, I did just that, I stood before Franklin high students to announce a $20 million scholarship fund to help them achieve their dreams.
I still remember being a high school student, unsure about my future. Back then, I would have been ecstatic to see someone come to my school offering money for college. I still remember saving my lunch money so that I could buy SAT study guides. I know firsthand, the challenges many of our students face, because I used to be in their shoes. Some of our Franklin students come from some of our most challenged neighborhoods, they face incredible odds early in life and deal with pressures that most adults would find overwhelming. These students often work to help provide for their families. They go to school lacking sleep or without food due to difficulties at home. Some live with the fear of being deported or seeing a loved one taken by immigration. Despite these challenges, most Franklin students stay focused on their goals.
When I look out at the many faces today, in the crowd of students, I can see myself. These young people are just as smart, just as creative and just as hardworking as any other, but many lack opportunity. That’s why today means so much to me; to be able to look at these students and say we want to see you succeed, can make all the difference in their lives.I believe that talent is universal but opportunity is not. With today’s assembly, we are helping to bridge the divide in our city so that all our students can look to the future with hope and optimism.