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Two members of the Hostos Community College family were highlighted in a multimedia feature produced by WSJ Custom Studios and Metlife
The video and accompanying article titled, For Low-Income Students, a New Graduation Equation, explore the financial challenges that many student-parents face, as well as the resources educational institutions like Hostos provide to help them succeed. 
Hostos alumna Naffie Baldeh, whose story is highlighted in both the article and video, had been in and out of community colleges over the years, and she juggled parenting her son and work while pursuing an sssociate degree at Hostos. Her schedule was unforgiving, and she experienced the strain many low-income students feel when trying to cover expenses like schooling, childcare and housing, among others. Such challenges can put students at risk for dropping out, which, statistically, many students eventually do. 
Resources like Hostos’ Empowering Student Parents (ESP) program aim to mitigate those challenges and help students graduate. Baldeh, who became involved with the program, says it helped her a lot, connecting her with resources—such as childcare providers and personal finance workshops—within the school, as well as within the community. She graduated with a concentration in liberal arts and plans to pursue a degree in psychology at the City College of New York this fall. 
The article also featured recent Hostos graduate and ESP Vice President Texy Texeira, who offered insights regarding the mental tug of war many students experience while trying to decide whether to pursue a college degree. 
“For a lot of parents, money is hard because most of what we do have goes to our children,” Texeira shared. “A lot of people drop out, because you have to choose whether you’re going to get a job or you’re going to go to school. Most of the time, it feels like the better choice is the job. But in the long term, through education, you can get a better job with fewer hours, and not have to struggle as much.”
Texeira, who hosts meet-ups for student-parents like herself, was part of the graduating Class of 2018. 
To check out both the video and accompanying article, go here
And to learn more about Hostos’ Empowering Student Parents program, go here