Meet our Fall 2018 SDL365 Achiever : John Taylor Sadler!


By Janie O'Brien / Posted: Nov 5, 2018 / 0 Comments / Posted in Student's Corner

John Taylor Sadler Photo

Name: John Taylor Sadler

University: University of Central Oklahoma

Major: History Education

Desired Job: History Professor

Graduation Year: 2020


Congratulations to John Sadler (Meet John on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram), the winner of our Fall SDL365 Achievers Scholarship 2018! We loved his essay about Overcoming the Odds and Making Your Dreams Come True pleased to offer her $500 to help pay for college tuition. Congrats, John! Overcome the Mountains to dream!


How to Overcome the Odds and Make Your Dreams Come True

When considering my long-term goals in life, I try hard to exempt the cost of obtaining an education from my thought process. I have learned that if you have a burning desire in your heart for anything and if you believe in your dream enough, you will find a way to make it happen.

Being the first in my family to attend college is just the beginning of my dream. I strive
to make my family proud of me and bring honor to our name by breaking tradition to pursue post-secondary education, thus placing me at the base of the mountain staring up high as I set out on this quest.

My engrossed love and knowledge of history is something I plan to teach to younger generations. I have always loved history and politics just like my father. At eight years old I was having in-depth conversations with my dad about history that would last forever. He instilled in me high respect for this subject. Dad also led by example with the strong work ethic that he passed down to me.

If there is one thing you should know about me, it is that I am highly ambitious and determined. I am no stranger to hard work. I would not work so hard if I did not believe in my ultimate mission and dream. This is just simply part of the climb necessary to reach the top of the mountain.

It is my life’s mission to impact as many lives as possible before I die. As Jackie Robinson once stated, “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.”

I am sure you will agree with me when I say that high school is a pivotal and vulnerable time in every student’s life. I aim to not only be an educator in history but a mentor in life. I want kids to be comfortable in coming to me to converse and share about hardships they are going through and their fears about the future. By being there for my students, I will then make an impact on their lives positively thus making my life valuable and impactful on society.

Until I reach this point, I have applied for literally hundreds of scholarships since my junior high school year. I do not stop. The process gets old and frustrating many times. I am just honest.

For the most part, I do not win any, and I feel like I have lost my footing on some loose rock on the climb and slide down just a little. However, I cannot help but think, the one scholarship I do not apply for could be the one I would win. Therefore, the vicious cycle starts all over, and I gain my footing back retracing my steps. Because of this mindset, this is how I was fortunate enough to fund over half of my tuition for my freshman year of college and allowing me to climb the slippery slope just a little higher.

Working part-time since I was sixteen years old and saving a portion of my paychecks each week is how I was able to fund my remainder of tuition for my freshman year. I have no issue earning what I want. Even now as a second-year full-time student I still hold down a part-time job while maintaining a 3.74-grade point average. I do not say any of this to brag or boast.

The point I am trying to get across is that I take my education seriously. Finishing school strong so that I may finally teach in the classroom is what I long for the most. Taking on thousands of dollars in student loan debt is not a solution to fund education in my opinion.

When I graduate college and enter the workforce, I would like to do so without having my name attached to multiple loans that I have to start repaying. I feel like that would be too stressful. This is why I still apply for scholarships and work, to alleviate some of the financial burdens.

Education is a tool that provides me with an excellent opportunity to be inspiring and motivating in the world. By fulfilling my goal as a teacher, I will be able to help students aspire to reach their highest potential and show them that through hard work and determination, anything is possible. Do not just settle and let your circumstances define you.

I once had a teacher in high school that cared enough about his students to push, mold, and shape. He was a real inspiration to me. He taught me so much more than just academics. He encouraged me to push myself and not to give up or make excuses. That drive and focus that I was taught are what I hope to pass on and develop in my classroom on a daily basis.

For me, being a history teacher is so much more than a career; it is living out my dream and reaching my students through creative means. Helping my students realize their value and what they have to offer in the world is what matters. Regardless of the obstacles standing in your path, with the right attitude and determination, you can overcome anything that comes your way.

Each day I wake up and take a breath, my journey continues, and one day my dream will become a reality. This is when I will have reached the top of the mountain and will gaze over the edge at all I have overcome.

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