Making The Most Of A Better Chance

Eight years ago, Westport’s ABC House welcomed 3 new Staples freshmen.

Joining A Better Chance — chosen from applicants all over the country — were Jonathan Choi, Charles Winslow and Khalif Rivers.

ABC logoThey quickly immersed themselves in local life. Jonathan made the Staples High School golf team, joined the Break Dancing Club, and spent many Saturdays in New York City, participating in academic enrichment programs. In 2009, he was  Staples’ salutatorian.

Charles was a captain of the volleyball team, a Junior Achievement participant, and held a part-time job.

Khalif played Staples football, and served as a mentor to young ABC scholars.

This spring, all 3 graduated from college. Jonathan went to Harvard, Charles to Cornell, and Khalif to West Virginia University.

(From left) Charles Winslow, Khalif Rivers and Jonathan Choi, at an ABC event earlier this year.

(From left) Charles Winslow, Khalif Rivers and Jonathan Choi, at an ABC event earlier this year.

So what’s next? Two will work in New York: Jonathan with Lazard Freres as an investment banking analyst focusing on M&A and restructuring; Charles as an analyst at Goldman Sachs, in corporate services and real estate development.

Khalif is taking a year off. Then he’ll start working on his master’s degree in counseling psychology.

I can’t imagine 3 better stories coming out of ABC. Or 3 better examples of why “A Better Chance” may just be the world’s most perfect acronym.

5 responses to “Making The Most Of A Better Chance

  1. Sandy Friedman

    This is such fantastic news to read. Congratulations to all three gentlemen. I hope the rest of your journey through life is is just as wonderful as the journey through high school and college.

  2. Stacey Henske

    So amazing!!!!

    Stacey Sent from my iPhone

  3. This is really a nice story to see that they took such advantage of the opportunities afforded them. Way to go guys and way to go ABC. Too bad that two of three ended up in investment banking (not that there is anything wrong with that). At least this way they may be able to afford to move back to Westport some day.

  4. Rick Leonard

    It’s so gratifying to see the continued growth and maturation of the ABC program here over the last dozen-plus years. Each graduating class, college success story and impressive professional achievement remind us of how incredible this program is and how far the ABC students can go.

  5. It shows how good ABC is BUT such gifted children usually succeed given even a little encouragement and support although ABC might be one of the best at this BUT I think of all of the others, the 99% others who might not be as gifted and who don’t pass the test to be able to take advantage of such opportunities. They, I think, even more need a better chance. They usually do not get too many second glances when their profiles are reviewed. They suffer most . “I gave up,” he told me. “Nobody wanted me. Nobody cared. I don’t care either.” If one sees the faces of these children when they become older, say in their later teens or 20s, beneath the often indifferent, angry, flatened looks, I see pain. God bless them. David