Jose is thrilled to have been accepted to the Respiratory Therapy Program at Skyline University, after waiting three years to win an available spot in their admission lottery. Prior to entering Hanna, Jose had been in and out of school and was getting into fights. “Hanna caused me to change my mentality and I learned how to set boundaries. The experience had a lasting impact on me; I was provided with tools to help me be independent and succeed in life.
“When I was very young, my mother was in an abusive relationship with my father in New York. I started to feel a lot of anger about the situation, which continued for two years, although at the time, it felt like it would never end. When my mom finally had enough, we moved back to San Francisco where I am originally from. Witnessing that abuse resulted in making me feel that fighting was OK, so I spent much of my early school years often getting into trouble. I had no interest in academics and was getting bad grades.
My mother had a friend who knew about Hanna Center. She told me to write a letter, which took me a year to complete because I didn’t want to leave my comfort zone. Today, I am very thankful that I finished writing the letter.
Hanna has helped me in ways I will forever be grateful for. I learned how to establish boundaries. My maturity level was very low, so I would sometimes take jokes too far. Hanna has also helped with my communication skills and how to best deal with emotional challenges, or whatever I was dwelling on. Hanna has also pretty much become a second family and home for me. They also help me to keep in touch with most of the people whom I had built a relationship with during my time here.
Today, I have a long-term goal to eventually buy a house and get married. My plan to get there requires a degree in respiratory therapy, which would not be financially possible if not for Hanna. I have always wanted to help people in some form. In 2018, while working at UCSF in patient support, I met a respiratory therapist and I started asking questions. He told me that Skyline had a program, so I started my research. On my third try, I finally got selected to participate. The school has a two-year certification, but they also offer a four-year BA program, which is what I eventually want to accomplish. Many of my family members are nurses and my sister is a doctor. None of those professions intrigued me until I learned about respiratory therapy. My goal is to be a great therapist and help save as many lives as I can. I could not afford this education on my own and I am so thankful and grateful for Hanna’s continued positive influence in my life, which has extended long past the time I was a student here.”