Think College Now students 8 years later

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- ABC7 News has an update on some East Bay Elementary students we first interviewed eight years ago. In 2007, they were fourth graders at "Think College Now" in Oakland.

The school has an emphasis on college prep with almost all minority students, many of whom are at or near the poverty line.

In June, students who attended the school will be the first to graduate high school -- a goal that was put in their heads from day one.

In 2007, Claudia Gonzalez said, "I want to be a doctor." And when we asked her what college she wanted to go to, she said Berkeley.

On Friday, Gonzalez said she is graduating and will go to college. She told ABC7 News, "I think it's something that, like, my parents are really proud of me."

Gonzalez actually picked UC Santa Cruz. She joined dozens of graduating seniors to share their college choices at a special gala Friday night. The attendees celebrated the soon-to-be grads and the school's 10-year anniversary.

The crowd also watched the story from ABC7 News reporter Lyanne Melendez from eight years ago to show how far these kids have come.

Think College Now founding principal David Silver said, "This is a dream come true for us. Because once they go to college and graduate from college, that's going to have generational change across our entire community."

In 2007, Silver said he would do anything to help get his kids to college, which included dancing on the roof as a reward for reading.
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