Student-Success-Jose-Silva

Hear my story of how I succeeded at Respect Academy:

My Steps To Success:

  • Realized that I can change my life
  • Enrolled at Respect Academy
  • Was consistent with my job
  • Graduated in 2015

My Story:

In today’s Respect Academy Podcast, our guest Jose Silva has gone through some rough changes in his life.

Jose went from being well connected with his friends since elementary school to having to be disconnected from them and moving schools. Since then he’s grown stronger and realized the truth of the world, and what it really takes to succeed.

Having grown from his discomfort, perhaps he has something to share with you, and all of us about friends, relationships, and how impactful being around the right people can make or break your road to greatness.


David:

Alright, today I have Jose Silva on the other line. He just recently graduated from Respect Academy. He’s 19 years old, and currently works at Honda.

How are you doing today, Jose?

Jose:

Good. You?

David:

Good good! Thanks for asking.

Hey, I just wanted to start off by really getting your story just so the listeners can understand,…

Where did you come from? What was your life like as you were younger and before you actually went to Respect Academy?

Jose:

Well, I basically like grew up with my friends, so� I went to Heming Middle School. Sixth Grade I grew up with all my friends. Then I went to Kennedy just because all of my friends were going there. So after that, came high school. My freshman and sophomore year were good. After I hit junior year, I kinda slacked. But I guess I was one hundred credits behind, so� I would have to go for full time at Kennedy. That when they were like, “Oh, we gotta let you go because you’re not gonna make.”

So you know, whatever. And, it kinda sucks man because I left all my friends, you know! So it was like,… I had to switch schools. It’s not something someone would want to do after they’ve attended a school where they knew everybody� then again�

I met the guy, Joey, who helped me get through and see a couple of schools. I went to Respect Academy to visit, then I went to West Career. My choice was West Career over Respect Academy first� but no one liked each other� that’s cool then. It’s a good school� honestly, it was a nice school, it was just really small. Everybody was� not how it was at Respect� And I went to Respect as well after that. I didn’t like it, so I switched schools� like I think in the middle of the second semester.

My senior year, cause when I was 14� And after that,… I honestly didn’t like Respect as well either. Like I honestly wanted to drop out of high school. But then again� Respect Academy didn’t give up on me.

“… I was one hundred credits behind…”

“I honestly wanted to drop out of high school.”

David:

Why did you feel like you wanted to drop out? What was the reason?

Jose:

I just felt like� I don’t know how to explain it� I just� I think I just missed my friends. That what I felt like. I missed my friends� and after that, I didn’t talk to anybody� I was just like, “Oh, why am I in school?…” It wasn’t fun� So, when I went to Respect, and after I went to Respect, they didn’t give up on me. They invited me to so many field trips and they tried to make it fun for me. That’s what I like about it. They didn’t give up.

I picked it up� I think the last couple of months. I didn’t go to Respect for awhile. My last couple of months, I crashed a couple of classes� And then they told me to go to summer school. And after they told me to go to summer school� I thought, “Alright, cool! You guys are really trying to get me to graduate.”

I like that, you know.

“They invited me to so many field trips and tried to make it fun for me. They didn’t give up.”

David:

Yeah, you liked the fact that they kept trying. You know, here you are�

You didn’t have a reason why to go, but they found it.

Jose:

Exactly. So I went to West Career Academy,… when I went to West Career Academy, they didn’t help me at all. They were just� “Oh well”, you know, “come to school… This this and that�”

They weren’t, I don’t know how to say it… they weren’t the perfect fit. Like, they weren’t trying�

And when I went to Respect Academy, they were trying. The teachers there and everything were trying to get me to do stuff� make it fun� you know! I respect that�

“The teachers there and everything were trying to get me to do stuff� make it fun� you know! I respect that�”

David:

What did they do to try to make it fun? Can you give me some examples?

Jose:

Well yeah, so Mr.Mcqueen… he’s a history teacher there� when I first started at Respect, you know, he knew I didn’t like him… cause I never went.

So one time he said, “I want to make high school fun for you at Respect.”

“I want to make high school fun for you at Respect.”

So he invited me to go to this event. And I was like, “Alright man” you know� that was cool� that was an example where he invited me to do that. Then I have the language arts teacher. She helped me out.

Because, I didn’t know anybody at Respect� So she helped me make friends. And then I have my principle. My principal� she was amazing. She was one of the best principles that I’ve ever had.

I went through my high school career, my middle school career. She was one of the best, because she never gave up on me at all. And also they do prizes. If you do good, they give out a prize� or if you score high on a test� they give you a prize. They have some much respect just at that school. So that’s what I liked about it.

“� they have some much respect just at that school.”

David:

They live by their name, huh?!

Jose:

Yeah.

David:

(Laughing). That’s good, that’s good. What’s the biggest thing you learned from Respect Academy?

Jose:

Ughh� Respect! That the biggest thing I learned from them. Respect, and like� If you want something, then you gotta achieve it. If you want something, then you gotta reach for it. You can’t just be lazy� and not get it. That’s all they’re at first, then they told me like� They picked me up� I went back to high school, I went back to Respect in 2015, and I killed it.

“If you want something, then you gotta achieve it. If you want something, then you gotta reach for it. You can’t just be lazy� and not get it.”

“I went back to Respect in 2015, and I killed it.”

Every quarter I passed 10 classes� and I graduated early in March. Yeah man� they were so cool. Like they were really really cool. After I graduated, they were like family� and a little celebration. They make you feel welcome, like you earned something.

But yeah man, Respect Academy is a good school. I liked it. Better than any other Academy school� I believe.

David:

What do you think is your favorite thing about Respect Academy?

Jose:

My favorite thing?

David:
Yes�

Jose:

They let you go on your own pace. You know how in highschool, you have to turn in an assignment or by a due date?

So at Respect Academy, they let you take your time, but you gotta finish it. They don’t nag you about it. You gotta finish, but take your time. They don’t force you to turn in something that’s due on that day.

They don’t pressure you� that’s what they don’t do. They don’t pressure you, that’s what I like about Respect. You go at your own pace.

“… at Respect Academy, they let you take your time, but you gotta finish it.”

David:

Wow that’s awesome. That something you don’t get a lot of at Academies or high schools. I remember back when I was in high school� You feel that pressure like “I have to finish it by this date,” and you know, you’re looked down upon. And it makes you feel horrible.

Jose:

Exactly. That’s how I felt after. They let you go at your own pace as long as you get it done� As long as you get it done. They don’t have a problem with it. You know, that’s what I like about Respect Academy.

You get it done, then just keep on doing it, but once start slacking and think, “Oh well get it done.” This and that, then that’s when they start to say, “Oh Jose, I need the paper, I need the work, you know� cause, we’re giving you another chance.” Like it happened to me. I used to not have to turn in my work, but I will turn it in� so that’s when they were like, “Jose, you need to turn in this and that.” They didn’t just say, “Oh well, you gotta do it.” They said, “Jose, you gotta do it. I can help you if you need my help. You know.” Not like, yeah, you know� that’s what I need. A little help because I don’t know what it means. Yeah and that’s one of the biggest reasons I passed my classes is because they didn’t just make you do it on your own. There is always someone there to help� You know, that’s a good thing. Because at a regular high school, you just have one teacher.

“They didn’t just say, “Oh well, you gotta do it.” They said, “Jose, you gotta do it. I can help you if you need my help. You know.””

“There is always someone there to help�

David:

That’s awesome. So do you feel like, the fact that they were there,… they weren’t pressuring you. Instead, they would actually help you. Offer your help. Did that just make you almost feel like you want to do it more? Actually complete the assignments??

Jose:

Yeah. Actually complete a class. I felt so good like, “Oh, I passed a class.” I want to pass another one. But it takes time. So I gotta put my mind to it. And then I have a teacher right here, or assistant teacher will help, you know. Like it’s not just, “Oh, I gotta wait for the teacher because she’s helping another student.” There’s always somebody out there to help you. No matter who. They all know what to do. That’s what I like about that school.

“I felt so good like, “Oh, I passed a class.” I want to pass another one.”

David:

Wow, that’s awesome.

How do you feel like you were different today, than before you went to Respect?

Jose:

I don’t know� I guess� today� well… how do you mean?

David:

Well how do you look at life? How do you look at getting things done?

Jose:

Well at work, I learned from high school to work and that if you want something done, you just gotta do it. I work at Honda. I know nothing about cars. I just gotta work till I learn about cars. You know?

David:

No no, that makes total sense. The best way to learn is to do it right?

Jose:

Yeah, now I’m at Respect, I went to school, you know. But I didn’t want to do my classes, but I had to do� the work� to get my classes done.

David:

Oh, that’s great.

Jose:

Yeah, it’s nice� even some classes at Respect� I didn’t know what to do, but I did it anyways because I wanted to feel good about myself, and say, “Oh, I tried something, and I finished.

David:

Wow�

Jose:

Yeah.

David:

Yeah, no that’s some really wise� powerful words. I really love your mentality of just going out and doing it. You know, a lot of people want to sit and think about it, dream about it, and just think, “Okay, it’s supposed to be given to me.” But here you’re saying, “No, you gotta actually go out and reach those goals. If you want something you gotta go out and grab it.”

Jose:

Yeah, that’s what Respect taught me to. They said, “If you want to achieve something you gotta do it,” you know what I mean?

David:

Yes, yes�

Jose:

I think it was a counselor told me that. I like that, because I use that in my graduation speech too� “If you really want something, you gotta reach for it. Your goals don’t just come to you.” That how� that’s how school was. You don’t just go to school� there’s gonna be friggin’ umm� obstacles that you’re gonna have to face, you know� to graduate high school. There’s worst things, you know what I mean? It’s really worth it.

“If you really want something, you gotta reach for it. Your goals don’t just come to you.”

David:

Yes…

Dillion:

Now I’m the first of my family to graduate.

David:

Woah� really??

Jose:

Yeah, my parents have 9 kids. I’m the second youngest, and I’m the first to actually graduate.

David:

Wow man� that’s a huge accomplishment. How does your family feel about that?

Jose:

They’re really excited. You know, when I graduated, I did my graduation speech and they were� it was really exciting. Coming home� my mom� my dad� it was just� I like it. It was worth it. It was very worth it.

David:

Jose, congratulations. I mean, that is a huge accomplishment. Out of 9 kids! To be the first to graduate. It sounds to me you’re really setting some type of example.

Jose:

Yeah�. yeah, yeah.

David:

Yeah. Jose, if you could go back in time and look at your younger self� like let’s say back when you were in middle school, before high school, what would you tell yourself?

What was the biggest advice you could tell yourself, if you could go back in time?

Jose:

Sometimes you gotta� let go of something� to achieve stuff. Sometimes you gotta risk it. You gotta give up the stuff to achieve your goals. And sometimes give up old friends. Give up all of that if I want to graduate high school� and go to� start off somewhere� That’s actually the advice I’d give myself. Sometimes you gotta take risk� to achieve your goals, you know what I mean?

David:

Yeah

Jose:

You gotta let go of stuff to achieve your goals. Whether that’s friends, make new friends� better friends� cause at the end of the day, your friends ain’t gonna be there when you graduate.

David:

That’s good, Jose, that’s some good advice.

Hey I want to say, thank you so much for really taking your time outta your day to share your story. Being vulnerable, I think it’s hard for some people. But I think your story will resonate with a lot of people. I think there’s a lot of people out there that are struggling or experiencing� maybe some of the things� maybe they’re having some difficulties just getting through school, or just getting through goals, right.

So I want to thank you for taking that time. And I definitely think that story that you just gave� and your example� I think it’s gonna set the example of many other people.

Jose:

Yeah, some people man. It’s not too late to go back to school, you know what I mean.

“It’s not too late to go back to school… “

David:

It’s never too late.

Jose:

The counselors at Respect Academy are some of the best counselors at any school, man.

Cause she helped so much. She is a big reason why I graduated too. Her and my sister.

David:

Yeah. Well you’ve gone a long way to they were you’ve graduated. You’re the first to graduate out of all your siblings, so congratulations man. Keep doing what you’re doing.

Jose:

Alright, thanks man.