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Valencia describes herself as someone whose “nose is always in the books because I know I have to work ten times as hard as my peers because of my circumstances. It amazes me how much financial situations can make or break one’s perseverance.” The daughter of a teen mother, Valencia experienced homelessness and understood that dedication to academics would give her and her family financial stability. She enrolled in a rigorous IB program, became active in Varsity Basketball and Track and community service, and decided to stay behind in Denver when her family moved to Louisiana in order to complete the IB program. An excellent student at Georgia Tech, Valencia is mature, poised, engaging and unafraid of big goals. She plans to attend medical school after being inspired by a transplant surgeon she met through her high school.