Being a teenager is difficult enough. It’s
especially tough if you happen to be a “PK.” You are monitored for what
you do, whom you know and what you say. Where others’ dreams are
realized, yours may not be. It isn’t fair.
Now you may think “PK” stands for “pastor’s kid.” But in this case it means “prisoner’s kid.”
help from the Kay T. DeMichele AngelTree Scholarship Fund, Ilse
Inzunza, 18, looks forward to a “full college experience” and a future
in journalism. The scholarship, administered by Love of Christ Lutheran
Church, Mesa, Ariz., gives youth with incarcerated parents a chance to
“In junior high I
wondered how I would ever be somebody with my dad in prison,” said
18-year-old Ilse Inzunza, who lives outside of Phoenix in Mesa, Ariz.
Inzunza’s father has served time in jail for various offenses since she
was 4 years old, including a three-year sentence for domestic violence.
she graduated from Mesa High School, Inzunza shared one bedroom of her
aunt’s house with her mother and 15-year-old brother (they had to leave
their apartment when money became scarce).
Difficult as her
family life has been, she never let it affect her. Inzunza consistently
earned a 4.0 grade point average starting in seventh grade, where she
enrolled in English Language Program classes and later in accelerated
course-work in high school. She is a National Honors Society student.
served on the high school yearbook staff, co-captained the pom and
cheer line for two of the three years she participated, and organized
clubs to assist children in need. The list of her accomplishments
“I always doubted I would go to college,” Inzunza said. “We simply couldn’t afford the loans.”
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