June 10 2009
Listen: I pulled up to Shequeda Jenkins' block and reached towards my back pocket to check her exact address. But, as I glanced down the street, I knew exactly which house it was: streamers on the porch, signs on the lawn and in the garden, a big marquee across the front windows, all shouting out loud "Congratulations Grad, 2009!" No need to double check -- that one must be her house.
I could tell you tons more about Shequeda, but she does a much better job. In our first of three pieces, we get a bit of background and a lot of personality -- an introduction to Shequeda:
Shequeda and I first met at her house in Metcalfe Park, just an hour before she had to get to an awards ceremony with Pearls For Teen Girls. When I asked her about the event, she played it off like it wasn't a big deal, "Oh, it's just a thing they do at the end of the school year." The thing is, I knew she was going to win the highest honor -- Girl of the Year. So, during the entire interview I was squirming. I knew and she wanted to know! Of course, sitting in the front row at the ceremony, I was glad I didn't ruin the announcement. Her genuine surprise and charmingly unprepared acceptance speech were priceless.
More on Pearls For Teen Girls from Shequeda:
Produced by: Adam Carr