Gustavo Smith

I was motivated to change my life after I held my two daughters from birth and promised their lives would not be like mine. As a single parent, I decided to enroll full-time at GTCC to accomplish my goal of becoming a community fitness educator. My desire to be a positive role model for my daughters has not changed despite custody battles, homelessness, loss of work, little money, and strict attendance policies. During my first semester, my daughters and I lived out of our van. Nevertheless, I strived to complete courses, maintain my GPA, and work as a work study student in GTCC’s physical education program, and I am now eligible to graduate with honors in May!  

With added strength and confidence, I became a Fatherhood Advocate and Community Health Coach, and my message of “fathers taking a more active role in the lives of their children and community,” was commended by the NC Fatherhood Coalition, Family Life Council, Triad Healthy Start Organization, and The National Healthy Start Organization, to whom I was invited to speak, on Capitol Hill, in Washington, DC. My progressive roles as advocate, coach, and father are positively sparked by GTCC!