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Proud Mom: Daughter CRJ’s First Ivy League Acceptance

Proud mom: Daughter First CRJ Ivy League Acceptance
When Lolita Guillory fled ​Louisiana on the heels of brutal hurricane Katrina, she had a singular focus.  Getting her young daughter Samina a quality education.  Somewhere else.​ With financial support from the Houston firefighter community, Ms. Guillory and three colleagues were rescued by four firefighters and brought to Houston while Samina stayed safely with family.​ In October of 2005 she resigned from her dispatcher position in New Orleans to make Houston home.  She describes it as a scary time.
But now, she is thrilled to see Samina, class of 2015, be Cristo Rey Jesuit’s first student to be accepted to an Ivy League College: Cornell University.  But that was just one of NINE acceptances.  She’ll head to Stanford in the fall.
“If there is one thing about Samina, she is always looking for opportunities.  She pushes ME.  If there is something she wants, she gets it DONE,” said mom.
The path to Cristo Rey Jesuit opened when a neighbor encouraged​ mom and daughter to attend an open house four years ago.  They heard stories about this new school with big dreams for its students.  Samina remembers that day clearly.”There was just an energy that I liked right away.  I mean here I was, in a different state, lost my dad.  But other kids here…everybody goes through something but you can’t let it bring you down.  This has been an amazing experience for me.”

 

 

Samina feels she’s been blessed in another important way during her Cristo Rey Jesuit career….by spending all four of her work-study years at Houston’s highly regarded Fretz Construction.  Bob recently accepted a major preservation award on behalf of the company.  The Good Brick Award celebrates outstanding and significant historic preservation efforts.

“I have loved working there. They are so supportive. Anytime I do something right, they talk about it for days” Samina laughs.

 

 

Bob and Millie are affectionately described as being amongst Cristo Rey Jesuit’s most caring supporters. And they adore Samina who thinks of them as family.

“Samina joined our company as a quiet yet focused freshman.  She always could be counted on to light up the office with her pleasant smile, and over the last four years, we’ve watched her become a confident and skilled young woman.  She embodies the best of Cristo Rey Jesuit and its successful Work

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Study Program.  While we are excited for her future at Stanford, and confident of her success, we will miss her presence in our office.  She’s been a delight for our entire staff,” Bob shared.

Millie is equally supportive of the Cristo Rey Jesuit Work-Study model and Samina.

“Samina reminded me that courage is infectious and the rewards can be amazing!  Samina stepped well outside her comfort zone numerous times over the past four years.  We saw her push past her nervousness and anxiousness and get beyond the “never done this before” jitters to really flourish.  We also saw how her brave steps encouraged those around her to challenge their comfort levels.”

In the weeks ahead Samina will head off to California to begin her studies in International Relations on a full scholarship.

At the end of her interview, when given the chance to talk about herself, her nearly perfect grades,​or the honor of being accepted at nine universities, she chose to praise Cristo Rey Jesuit.

“Being here has meant being part of a community. I have accomplished things I never, ever thought possible.”