PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — National Foster Care Month comes to a close today. A Philadelphia student is sharing how he overcame adversity and instability to excel in the classroom. He now wants to help other foster care children succeed.
“My senior year has been definitely one to remember, first time having straight A’s so far,” Kevin Hernandez said.
Hernandez is having a standout senior year at South Philadelphia High School. He’s been accepted to Keystone College on a football scholarship.
He’s the first in his family to graduate high school and attend college after growing up in foster care for years.
“I’ve been in foster care since the age of 13. I mean, growing up it was kind of hard,” he said.
Only Kevin knows just how hard it’s been on his personal journey, but he’s used music to inspire the change he’s wanted to see in his life.
“Music is kind of what motivates me, I can’t do anything without music, I can’t take tests without music, I use music to go to sleep,” he said.
Music director Courtney Powers has seen Kevin blossom this year into a straight-A student, who has used all genres of music to fuel him.
“From the first meeting, where he was kind of excited about music class but kind of shy, but as the year progressed, he has actively wanted to speak,” Powers said.
He now speaks at various schools and organizations, sharing his story of growing up in the foster care system and advocating for other kids in the same situation.
“A journey to express childhood trauma and like how growing up in our environments have affected us. Where I came from and everything, a lot of people doubted me. I just want to be able to prove people wrong,” Kevin said.