Shannon Satonori Lytle wasn't supposed to go to an Ivy League college. At least, those were the sentiments expressed in his hometown in Ohio, who told him that only the children of "lawyers and doctors" go to Ivy League colleges.
But Shannon wasn't your typical student. Words wouldn't deter him, nor would his unfavorable socioeconomic status. Instead he was determined to get out of his small town and achieve his dreams, and after working many dead-end jobs- not to mention looking after his three siblings while juggling his homework in a house without wifi- the young man recently graduated from Harvard, a place that is widely considered one of the best universities in the world.
Sharing an awe-inspiring post on his Facebook page to mark the momentous occasion, the Ivy League graduate, who studied computer science, revealed in a story reminiscent of the Will Smith movie, The Pursuit of Happiness, that he worked 150 hours just to buy a laptop and would even lean out of the window to steal his neighbour's wifi reception.
After seeing the post amass hundreds of thousands of shares, the computer science graduate has been inundated with press interviews, with Teen Vogue one of many outlets keen to get his attention. Speaking to them, Lytle said, “I often felt inferior because of my socioeconomic status. No matter what your personal obstacle is, please don’t feel this way if you can help it. Raise your head, roll up your sleeves, and work hard knowing that every person is valuable and deserves a chance to become the person they want to be.”
While Shannon graduated last year, we thought it was worth covering to anyone going through a hectic exams season. After all, we can easily get bogged down by the overwhelming workloads college sometimes gives us, but Shannon's story is one of hope and can make any of us believe that we can see our dreams realized should we put in the effort and sacrifices.
You can read the fantastic Facebook post by clicking here.
If you know a student who you think would benefit from this young man's words, then share it online so the next generation of students can be just as successful and remarkable as Lytle.